Saturday, August 16th, 2014 by Madison Project Staff and is filed under Blog, Uncategorized
The Republican Party isn’t acting as if they are very serious about winning the fight in Washington, D.C. heading into the November General Election season.
Why do we say this?
Because their three talking points for why we need make Mitch McConnell majority leader in January of 2015 are:
- The Keystone pipeline
- Repeal the medical device tax
- Fire Harry Reid
This strategy is akin to eating the scraps off the floor and nibbling around the edges. The nation is heading recklessly over a cliff and these are the three main priorities?
Let us explain why these should be non-starters.
The Keystone pipeline: We agree that this is an important issue. But is this THE winner when it comes to freeing up the gas and oil markets in the United States? No, it’s not. There have been all kinds of projections as to why we need the Keystone Pipeline. The most obvious one is the new jobs it will create. As with most projections, numbers can vary wildly, so let’s just go with a few thousand new jobs. Now, let’s consider what would happen if we actually lifted some of the regulations on the gas and oil industry. We are not talking unfettered drilling anywhere and everywhere. But we are saying that Americans need to consider the benefits of domestic drilling regulations, both on and offshore, being lifted so the markets can become more competitive domestically and abroad. If the GOP really wanted to get serious about creating jobs, they would go beyond Keystone.
The medical device tax: This is not a winner. Not now, not ever. How is bailing out special interests and leaving the American taxpayer/health care consumer under the thumb of government regulation a good idea? Leave it to those with a Beltway mentality to think this is a winner. This is the ultimate inside-baseball issue that not only removes part of the coalition working to repeal Obamacare, it does virtually nothing to alleviate the burden Obamacare places on everyday Americans. It might create a few thousand jobs, but this is not a win for the American people. It will be a win for corporations and lobbyists, who can put more money into campaign coffers than 99 percent of Americans can.
Fire Harry Reid: Why? So we can get the sterling leadership of Mitch McConnell? Take a few minutes, and try to name anything that Mitch McConnell has accomplished during his 30 years in the United States Senate? Some folks, after clicking their fingers for a few seconds will ask, “Isn’t that the Senator who fought against campaign finance reform?” They would be correct. Over 10 years ago and that’s it. We understand the “taking the majority” angle of “Fire Harry Reid,” but let’s not fool ourselves. There is not going to be a dramatic shift in direction with Mitch McConnell at the helm of the United States Senate. For those saying he’ll stop Obama nominees, remember: this is the man who has voted for 81 percent of Obama’s judicial nominees. In fact, in 1993, he also voted to confirm Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Stephen Breyer, two of the Supreme Court Justices who voted 5-4 to uphold the Constitutionality of Obamacare. This is also the man who pushed for the Wall Street bailouts, TARP and other massive big government policies. Now, ask yourself the question “Why?” again.
If this is what the Republican Party has been reduced to when it comes to issues they think are winning issues, then we can safely say two things. They are neither serious nor are many members of Congress with an “R” behind their names worth keeping in Washington, DC.
Friday, August 15th, 2014 by Madison Project Staff and is filed under Blog, Elections, Press
He’s a decorated war veteran and a successful small businessman. He served for years as a state senator in Oklahoma and now he’s running for United States Congress.
When it comes to candidates running this election cycle, Steve Russell and the OK-5 race have been sleepers. In a state where all 66 counties went for John McCain in 2008, many folks assume that whoever wins in Oklahoma will be conservative. While that is true in some instances, such is not the case in OK-5. While Steve won the primary, he did not win enough of the vote to avoid a run-off and this next Tuesday, August 26th, voters in OK-5 will decide who to send to Washington, DC, Steve Russell or Patrice Douglas.
Not only a limited government conservative, Steve is also a staunch supporter of life, having co-authored bills that define life as beginning at conception, that restrict abortions and that require women seeking abortions to be fully informed regarding the procedure.
When we look at the math of politics, our goal is to advance the ball each and every election cycle with comprehensive conservatives. Steve Russell fits that criteria on both fiscal and social issues. What is even more important to us is the feedback from conservatives on the ground in Oklahoma and when local tea party leaders are calling us asking us to engage on behalf of Steve Russell, this only confirms the direction we were headed.
We are thrilled to endorse Steve today and look forward to celebrating a victory with him on Tuesday.
Monday, August 11th, 2014 by Madison Project Staff and is filed under Blog, Uncategorized
We are posting below the text of Drew Ryun’s speech at the Red State Gathering. As Drew would say, “These are my notes. I never read my speeches. I may or may not have stuck to this word for word. . . .”
“People often ask me how I got into politics and if I majored in poly-sci.
Oddly enough, I took one poly-sci class in college and majored in History and English, dropping my third major, Latin, after reality set in two years into my college career. I figured two majors was enough to succeed in life and running on a track scholarship, I needed more hours in the day to train, not study.
As for politics, I sort of fell into it. The year was 1996 and with the 2nd Congressional District seat being vacated by Sam Brownback so he could run for Senate, there was an opportunity and one of Kansas’ favorite sons, my dad, Jim Ryun, made the decision to run for the seat. To some extent, it was a no brainer and many chalked it up as a sure win. It was anything but that. After a contentious primary, dad spent most of the general election trailing a multi-millionaire trial attorney. Outspent 2 to 1, his campaign had few options. We weren’t going to beat the opponent on the air. So we hit the ground and over the last month of the campaign, with a concerted effort on the ground, we overcame a 7 point deficit to win by 7 points.
Let’s just say the appetite was whetted, but it wasn’t until the 2002 election season that I became hooked. That was the year that the Republican National Committee rolled out its “vaunted” Voter Vault system. I was approached to help recruit and lead a grassroots team that was dropped in last minute to the special election pitting then Congressman Jim Talent against Jean Carnahan in Missouri. The beginning of this fray into politics started rough. I walked into the Joplin County GOP HQ with high expectations, envisioning, I don’t know why, a robust headquarters with a phone bank, teeming with volunteers.
As the door slammed behind me, it echoed in the silence of what turned out to be an old doctor’s office at the far end of which sat a middle aged woman behind a cardboard table with a solitary rotary phone.
I paused for a moment then asked the obvious question: “Is this really the GOP headquarters?”
The woman smiled, excited that what appeared to be her lone volunteer for the day had arrived, “It sure is!” she said enthusiastically.
Me, still somewhat shocked, asked, “Where is the phone bank?”
Puzzled she asked, “A what?”
At that point reality set in and I asked if there was another phone. She said there was another one in the room next to her. I walked in and called back to the RNC in DC reaching my buddy Timmy Teeple.
“There’s a problem, man. The HQ is an old doctor’s office and there is nothing here. No volunteers, no phone bank, nothing.”
I’ll never forget his reply. First it was laughter. Then it was, “Oh, we knew. That’s why we sent you. We figured if there was anyone who could figure it out, it was you. I also knew that if you knew how bad it was, you might not have gone.”
Me: “I’m gonna need more money.”
“Well, there aren’t any more. Good luck. I know you can do this.”
I’m not sure what I said next, but I am pretty sure it was akin, “Wait until I get back to DC, chief.” And then I hung up and sat for 5 minutes, but myself, facing a crossroads in life. A very real part of me wanted to toss in the towel. I know we’ve all had similar crossroads in life. One path is to give in and give up. The other is to plow ahead.
After 5mins, I pushed myself out of the chair and decided, “Well, I am here. Here goes nothing.”
I then proceeded to call every donor type I knew at that time. Anyone, anywhere. If I was going to pull it off, I was going to need a phone bank. 3 days later and the effort $10k richer, my buddy Bob Goodwin and I had slapped together the ugliest phone bank you have ever seen. Calling upon every local volunteer, we had the worst collection of old phones you’d ever seen. The local phone company wired the HQ with as many phone lines as we could fit and to create some noise barriers and separation, we built call booths out of cardboard boxes. By weeks end, with my grassroots team having rolled in, we had 100 phones going, both there in the HQ and at local businesses. I set up our goal precincts in a four county region on a framed map that sat behind a large piece of glass and we systematically hit doors during the day, phones at night. On election night, we won by 1.4% with 25% of that margin of victory coming from the 4 counties my team worked.
I often share that story for this reason. There are no silver bullets in politics. I know many of you know this, but we as a movement love to talk. We love to spin out great and wonderful ideas that in a perfect world will solve all our problems, end world hunger and get this country back on track.
I have news for you. We have more than enough good ideas to launch from. We have a sound political epistemology to work from. We know what we believe and why we believe it. It’s time to roll up our sleeves and jump into the trenches.
Let me ask you this. How many of you believe there is a conservative movement?
Let me ask it a little differently. How many of you think there is a conservative POLITICAL movement? There is a difference. One loves to talk, the other loves action.
It is action that we need these days and it is action from the ground up. Oddly enough, I do think there is a use for the Republican Party today as a vehicle. There is even a greater need to dump many of those inside it.
To my shame as a former Republican National Committee operative, apparently the party is now okay with those who hold official positions with the committee to use any and all tactics to win elections. From the Barbours claiming their race baiting in Mississippi was “expanding the electorate” and seemingly okay with calling the tea party racists and then Pontious Pilate-like washing their hands of the affair with a casual, “What can you do about it?”
These are the same folks that the leaders of the three national committees apparently have no problem with. They would rather kill their base than lose.
In the end they are going to create an even stronger, more energized base and still lose.
These same folks will tell you, “ObamaCare is here to stay, so we have to find ways to work with it.”
Wrong. We are a free society built on the concept that we are free to make our own decisions within an ordered society and that includes insurance in a free market.
Folks, I don’t know about you, but I believe we can still win. I do. I know we are fighting a two front battle. We are up against a party who wants nothing to do with its party platform (the unwashed have written it, we can ignore it!) because they want to “grow the party.”
Let me be honest with you-their idea of growing the party is so they can continue to cling to power, money and the status quo. Ask your average, back bencher GOP Congressman who votes for leadership so he can get his committee assignments what the party platform is, and you will most likely get a blank state in return. Ask him to explain the free markets and what a conservative ideology is and the blank stare will be replaced with panic.
Enough is enough. I am not saying we have to run off and create a third party. I think that is political suicide. If we want to win, we’re going to have to win the hard way, taking every inch of ground inside of the primaries, never giving up.
Will there be losses along the way? Yes, many. Will there be great victories? Absolutely.
As my dad told me growing up, nothing worth having ever comes easy.
To some extent, that is the essence of America, isn’t it? We were founded upon the great pursuit of what many felt was unattainable: a republic based on the concept that individuals have the right to pursue life, liberty and happiness. We take that for granted these days, but back in the 18th century dominated by monarchies, that was unheard of. We created a new reality, carving this dream out of unimaginable hardships and wildernesses that stretched for thousands of miles. It is that same spirit that drives us today, not to return to the days of the Founders, but to renew the promise of their vision in a 21st century.
It was one of those Founders whose life reaches through the centuries to remind us of this. Only recently have people begun to hear the name of Joseph Warren and place him in the pantheon of John Adams, George Washington, Thomas Jefferson and others. One of the ring leaders of the Sons of Liberty, Warren was the orator of the fledgling rebellion, giving voice to the colonists frustrations and while Sam Adams attempted to negotiate a peaceful ending to the boycott of the tea trade in Boston, it is believed it was Warren that led the Sons of Liberty, dressed as Indians, to throw the tea into the Boston Harbor.
The man was a true believer, who even, when elected by the first Continental Congress to be general of the new forces, refused to take command at Breed’s Hill, now known as the Battle of Bunker Hill, citing inexperience. With musket in hand, having hiked miles to get to the battle front, he told the commander of the American forces, William Prescott, “Place me where you think the fighting will be heaviest.”
It was there that he died, covering the final American retreat as they ran out of ammunition and began hurling rocks at the advancing British troops.
You know that question, “If you could have dinner with four famous people in history, who would they be?” Let me just say that Warren would be one of them.
Months before his life ended on Bunker Hill, he was chosen to again give the memorial speech on the anniversary of the Boston Massacre. In the Feneuil Meeting hall, standing room only with hostile British officers sitting in the front row seeking to intimidate him with unholstered pistols, Warren gave what I think is one of the greatest speeches in American history.
He ended with this:
“Our country is in danger, but not to be despaired of. Our enemies are numerous and powerful; but we have many friends, determining to be free, and heaven and earth will aid the resolution. On you depend the fortunes of America. You are to decide the important question, on which rest the happiness and liberty of millions yet unborn. Act worthy of yourselves.”
Let us act worthy of ourselves.”
Thursday, July 31st, 2014 by Daniel Horowitz and is filed under Blog, Immigration
One of the most egregious aspects of Barack Obama’s presidency – if not the most egregious aspect, is his contempt for our borders and sovereignty. Among all of Obama’s illegal and imperial acts as president – and there have been many – none of them have affected laws more fundamental to preserving our existence as a sovereign nation like his administrative edicts granting amnesty and inviting in illegal immigrants from around the world.
Yet, instead of using the power of the purse or even simply expressing outrage against Obama’s open borders policies, Republican leadership has remained indifferent for the past few years. Concurrently, they joined with Democrats and publicly agreed with the premise that passing amnesty is one of the most pressing priorities of our time. In fact, if not for those dreaded outside conservative groups and the fervent opposition of the GOP base, these same Republicans would have easily passed the Gang of 8 comprehensive amnesty bill. Even after they were forced to oppose that bill, they merely expressed opposition to its comprehensive nature while echoing the core values and dyslexic priorities expressed in this odious piece of legislation.
At the time, we warned that fervent bipartisan support for amnesty would not only cripple our welfare system, it would perpetuate a vicious cycle incentivizing new waves of illegal immigrants. We were ridiculed, mocked, and marginalized by the broader GOP party elite.
Fast-forward a year later, and everything our side predicted came to fruition dramatically. The forces behind open borders in both parties were completely repudiated in spectacular fashion in front of the entire nation. As we predicted, once the other side of the debate would be properly articulated, the American people would side with us. Indeed immigration has become the worst issue for President Obama, even factoring in a languishing job market and Obamacare.
Republicans had the opportunity to unite and stand firmly against amnesty while using the power of the purse to end the lawlessness once and for all. Instead, they completely adopted Obama’s messaging about this being a humanitarian crisis exclusively related to unaccompanied kids. They adopted his message that this was a crisis requiring immediate funding and changing of statutes related to “Bush era” laws. They focused on everything except for the original culprit of the border surge, and indeed, they ultimately failed to address their own concerns with the statutes and made current law worse.
Why were they so recalcitrant to deal with Obama’s illegal amnesty, even as Obama promised to grant new waves of amnesty? Why were they willing to grant Obama new money before he agrees to swear off amnesty?
It’s real simple. The same forces behind their ill-advised and politically tone-deaf pursuit of amnesty last year are still running the show. All of the leadership lobbyists, staffers, pollsters, and donors are still inexorably against true enforcement measures and desire more amnesty. Hence, they were forced to walk a tight-rope in which they pretended to care about the border, but ultimately refused to act against DACA in any consequential way. They needed to buy off conservative votes, but deep down they are still aligned with the open borders crowd. Not surprisingly, Becky Tallent, the co-author of the McCain amnesty bill, was allegedly involved in drafting this flawed bill. Talk about the fox guarding the hen-house.
Sadly, the vacuum of leadership that actually shares our values has created much acrimony among conservatives in the House. Stymied by efforts to advance conservative proposals, individual members are confronted with tortuous decisions – whether to buck their own party and become marginalized or whether to eat the excrement sandwich and violate their principles. Some members who choose the latter approach try to convince themselves that they are sincerely making progress moving leadership to their position.
Ultimately, what many members and beltway conservatives fail to see is that this is not a family disagreement over strategy. The core movers and shakers within the party are completely out of touch with their party base, and frankly, the majority of the country, on this issue. They have no intention to fight open borders because they are controlled by those very elements who have engendered this problem in the first place.
Amazingly, two of the members of Boehner’s “border task force” were part of the House Gang of 8 last year and are passionate supporters of amnesty. Most notably, Boehner omitted DACA from his lawsuit against Obama’s lawlessness.
Some of these same members who are feigning outrage and expressing the desire to “do something” about the border were nowhere to be seen when the issue blew up last year. Many of them were on the wrong side of the issue. Now they refuse to use their first point of leverage to stop Obama’s amnesty and are dismayed that conservatives were not fooled by their distractions and shiny objects. They have no one to blame but themselves.
Wednesday, July 30th, 2014 by Daniel Horowitz and is filed under Blog, Immigration
The bill proposed by House Republicans (H.R. 5230), not only fails to address the root causes of the border surge or hold President Obama accountable, it actually weakens current law. While distracting from Obama’s DACA and promises of amnesty with statutory minutia over the 2008 anti-trafficking law, the House bill actually makes matters worse and voids out the entire purpose of modifying that law:
1) No Mention of DACA Amnesty: This is not only the cause of the border surge, it is an ongoing threat as Obama openly promises to grant amnesty for 5-6 million more people. The glaring omission and the fear to even mention it will not go unnoticed by Obama.
2) Only Addresses UACs: Republicans have completely bought into the messaging from the White House that this crisis is all about unaccompanied children. Yet, UACs only account for 20% of the recent surge in border crossings. This bill does nothing to address the catch and release policies of the other 80%.
3) Does Not End Catch and Release: Although the bill repeals Section 235(a) of the William Wilberforce Trafficking law and places UACs from non-contiguous countries into judicial proceedings, nowhere does it prevent HHS from releasing them into custody of relatives (often illegal immigrants) during the myriad of delays in proceedings subject to the discretion of the judge. So even though they are selling this bill as a means of expedited removal, as it requires adjudication within 7 days and a decision within 72 hours thereafter, that is only relevant to those who bother to attend or show up to subsequent hearings. Without ending catch and release, almost none of the UACs will ever appear before a court.
4) Does Not Close Asylum Loophole: Even those few who appear before the court and are ruled inadmissible to the U.S. can have a chance to apply for asylum with a claim of “credible fear.” [page 21] As we already know, there is an unlimited supply of pro bono immigration attorneys who will coach them to claim persecution. A whopping 92% of credible fear applicants have been approved in recent years. Once their claim is accepted, they will be sent back to HHS and likely released into custody of relatives. This bill actually insults our intelligence and addresses the asylum loophole in Section 106….only for drug smugglers! Everyone else is explicitly granted the opportunity to seek asylum.
5) Makes UAC Crisis Worse with De Facto Amnesty: Section 103 [page 27] of this bill mimics the provision in Senator Cornyn’s bill, which actually makes it easier for recent arrivals to thwart deportation than under current law. It allows all those who received a Notice to Appear since January 2013 to get a second bite at the apple. Their notice will be expunged and they will have another chance to apply for admission, even if they ignored previous orders to appear. The immigration judge will then have sole discretion to grant amnesty as long as “the granting of such motion would not be manifestly unjust.” [Section 103(c)(3)]
6) Actually liberalizes law on Mexican UACs: Changing the 2008 Wilberforce law and equalizing treatment of UACs from Mexico with those from Central America is a double-edged sword. While making the laws governing those from Central America stricter (although other provisions will void that out, as noted above), this bill will liberalize the laws governing Mexican UACs. Under current law, they can be returned to Mexico immediately [8 U.S.C. §1232(a)(2)(A)]. The House bill will place them into the same judicial process as other UACs, granting them the opportunity to be released and/or to apply for asylum.
7) Keeps HHS Throughout Entire Process: One of the purposes of repealing the Wilberforce law governing UACs from Central America was so that we can prevent HHS from helping integrate them into the country. This bill keeps them in the custody of HHS throughout the entire judicial process and never mandates “detention” in a legal sense.
8) No Mission for National Guard: While the bill appropriates funds for any usage of the National Guard at or near the border, it never explicitly calls for activating the military, nor does it mandate how Obama uses the soldiers. Barring specific directions, Obama can and will use them for his purposes.
9) Transferring UACs to Military Bases: Instead of barring the use of military bases to house the UACs, Section 302 of the bill merely expresses “ the sense of Congress” that the administration notify them before doing so. Ironically, with regards to DACA, the House was too scared to even express their sense that the president should no longer grant administrative amnesties.
10) No Fence: Any discussion of dealing with the border crisis without mandating completion of the Secure Fence Act – the only proven method – is worthless.
Wednesday, July 30th, 2014 by Daniel Horowitz and is filed under Blog, Debt
In a classic Washingtonian political maneuver, both parties are prepared to introduce a massive new Veterans Affairs health care entitlement and force members to vote up or down on the entire package before they hustle off to their awaiting flights home for the August recess. While containing one or two good proposals, the Sanders-Miller conference agreement will create a new entitlement, possibly as big as Medicare Part D, without addressing the fundamental problems with the VA that are short-changing our veterans. Most of the funds will be designated as “emergency spending,” which will exempt it from the requirement for offsets.
Much like most crisis-driven pieces of legislation, this bill sounds good on the surface. It would authorize $5 billion for hiring of additional staff and almost $2 billion for construction of 27 new facilities. The bill would also spend $10 billion granting veterans the option to seek care at private facilities, for those who are 40 miles away from a VA system or for those who have waited in line without getting an appointment for 30 days. $5 billion of the spending would be offset with other cuts to the VA while the rest of the tab would be exempt as emergency spending.
Here are some of the core concerns with the bill:
Read more at Breitbart:
Tuesday, July 29th, 2014 by Daniel Horowitz and is filed under Blog, Press
For Immediate Release:
July 29, 2014
Madison Project Urges Senators to Oppose Highway Bill, Adopt Mike Lee’s Innovation
Fort Worth, Texas – The Madison Project PAC issued the following statement ahead of Tuesday’s vote on the Highway and Transportation Funding Act of 2014 (H.R. 5021) in the U.S. Senate:
“With so much waste, inefficiency, and debt in the federal transportation system, the time is ripe for the Senate to go big on transportation policy,” said Daniel Horowitz, policy director of the Madison Project. “The current highway bill before the Senate invests even more money into the sinkhole of federal transportation policy and uses the most absurd accounting gimmicks to offset the $10.8 billion tab. The endless debt and constant threat of increased federal taxes exposes the absurdity of running something like transportation of 50 states from the nation’s capital.
“The only way to improve our infrastructure, avoid tax increases on a federal level, prevent the need for earmarks, and avoid wasteful and inefficient projects is to devolve the gas tax and the related responsibility for surface transportation to the 50 states, except for those projects that are national in scope and therefore germane to federal oversight and funding. Senator Mike Lee’s Transportation Empowerment Act (S. 1702) will do just that, and will come to the floor as an amendment to the highway bill.
“It’s time we free the states and the citizens from the paralysis, waste, and fraud that is associated with the lobbyist-driven federal transportation policy. Like other federal policies, it has encumbered growth and development for far too long. We urge all senators to oppose the underlying bill and adopt Sen. Lee’s amendment to empower the states with authority over transportation and abolish the gasoline tax.”
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/
# # #
Monday, July 28th, 2014 by Daniel Horowitz and is filed under Blog, Immigration
Not only is this president akin to an arsonist who comes onto the scene of the border crisis as the firefighter, he is actually standing there with a blow torch promising to set our sovereignty ablaze like never before. While we are suffering the consequences of Obama’s open immigration invitation to the world, he is threatening to grant further amnesty to as many as 5 million illegal immigrants.
To be clear, administrative amnesty is a flagrant violation of federal law (8 U.S.C. § 1225), which requires ICE to place aliens who are not “clearly and beyond a doubt entitled to be admitted” to the United States into removal proceedings. Moreover, any effort to grant illegals work permits is incontrovertibly in violation of Section 274A of the Immigration and Nationality Act:
(a) Making employment of unauthorized aliens unlawful
(1) In general
It is unlawful for a person or other entity—
(A) to hire, or to recruit or refer for a fee, for employment in the United States an alien knowing the alien is an unauthorized alien (as defined in subsection (h)(3) of this section) with respect to such employment, or
(i) to hire for employment in the United States an individual without complying with the requirements of subsection (b) of this section…
Yet, amazingly, despite this unprecedented imperial activity, Speaker John Boehner omitted immigration as an example of Obama violating separation of powers in his op-ed defending his lawsuit against the President.
One would expect Republicans to use their first leverage point to put an immediate end to this lawlessness, especially while Obama is openly promising to double down on administrative amnesty. Yet, not only are Republicans refusing to use current appropriations to rein in this imperialism, they plan to give him new funding without first demanding that he swear off further amnesties.
Folks, this is not just about Republicans as a powerless minority party. With control of the House, they can easily leverage all funding against administrative amnesty. They certainly have the power to block new funding. Yet they are silent.
Does anyone really think this behavior will change when Republican take back the Senate?
Thursday, July 24th, 2014 by Daniel Horowitz and is filed under Blog, Foreign Policy
Democrats have a penchant for implementing bad policies and then responding to the deleterious consequences by throwing money at the problem. The Senate supplemental appropriations bill, sponsored by Sen. Barbara Mikulski (D-MD), allocates an additional $2.7 billion to deal with the border crisis, yet declines to deal with the flawed policies that have engendered this new wave of illegal immigration in the first place. Ironically, in order to grease the skids of the bill, Democrats have attached an extraneous rider sending $225 million to help pay for Israel’s Iron Dome System, which is yet another example of throwing money at a policy problem they helped create.
What Israel needs most now is the ability to defeat the Hamas terrorists and preserve its sovereignty – unencumbered by drive-by micromanagement from the White House. No country can survive economically if its entire population has to huddle in bomb shelters waiting for the next rocket to drop.
Unfortunately, not only has President Obama declined to side with our best ally, he has demanded an immediate cessation of Israel’s self-defense operation even as the rockets continue to fall. This week, Obama has taken his dyslexic moral relativism to a new level by rewarding Hamas for their rocket attacks near Israel’s only international airport by banning all flights to Tel Aviv. There is nothing more inimical to a county’s economic vitality than shutting down its airport, and it appears that Hamas has now achieved their desired result. They are declaring victory in light of Obama and other world leaders issuing bans on travel to Israel.
So after telling Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to suspend his effort to destroy Hamas rocket launchers, Obama now has the impertinence to complain about the lack of security at Ben Gurion airport. Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX), rightfully asked, “If the FAA’s decision was based on airline safety, why was Israel singled out, when flights are still permitted into Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Yemen?”
With whom does this president’s sympathies lie? As Cruz noted, “The facts suggest that President Obama has just used a federal regulatory agency to launch an economic boycott on Israel, in order to try to force our ally to comply with his foreign-policy demands.”
Sadly, instead of holding their party leader accountable for abrogating the long-standing relationship with Israel and endangering their economic and national security, Democrats are distracting attention with legislative logrolling. They are tossing in extra funding for Israel’s defense in order to sweeten the pot for a misguided border bill, while simultaneously evincing a pro-Israel image. Democrats, who are always sensitive to polling, must be keenly aware of the fact that Americans strongly support Israel’s right to self-defense and self-determination.
But what good is it to send more money to Israel only to use those funds to undercut their security and instigate a de facto economic boycott? Much like the crisis on our southern border, sending money to alleviate a problem while doubling down on the policies that cause or exacerbate the crisis is counterintuitive.
It’s unfortunate that Democrats lack the moxie to confront the leader of their party over his egregious actions against Israel – a sphere of policy for which they claim bipartisan support. For all the complaints about conservatives and the Tea Party, everyone should appreciate the fact that the party faithful are willing to hold their leadership accountable for violating its principles. To the extent that Democrat rank-and-file really oppose terrorism and support Israel, they should do the same. Adding funding for Israel’s security to an inappropriate legislative vehicle will not conceal their indifference toward Obama’s dangerous foreign policy.
Ultimately, it is quite ironic that after advocating open borders back home, Obama has now moved onto the next agenda item – ensuring that Israel lacks secure borders as well. Maybe the Democrats are onto something by juxtaposing these two disparate policies after all.
Wednesday, July 23rd, 2014 by Daniel Horowitz and is filed under Blog, Elections
Members of an opposing political party are usually not focused on the internal affairs of their opponents, but Senator Chuck Schumer is riveted by the GOP “civil war.” Throughout the past few years, he has offered almost daily analysis and comments on the internal strife within the party, expressing his strong desire for the party elites to emerge victorious. He has finally poured out his heart in a New York Times op-ed, calling for an end to closed primaries, primarily because of the Republican civil war.
Is Chuck Schumer suddenly planning to become a Republican? Why is he so fascinated with Republican politics? Shouldn’t he be more concerned with Democrat internal affairs?
Upon further scrutiny of Schumer’s intent, his obsession with Republican politics makes a lot of sense. While it’s important to pick the players on your own team, it is even more effective to pick your opponents. In this op-ed Schumer clearly reveals that there is only one type of Republican he truly fears, and if he had the power to change the laws governing elections, he would make sure that Republicans only elect politicians who will serve as straw-men opposition to the liberal agenda.
Schumer is advocating for open primaries so that, in his own words, Democrats and Independents can prevent “extreme” candidates from winning the Republican primary:
“But primaries poison the health of that system and warp its natural balance, because the vast majority of Americans don’t typically vote in primaries. Instead, it is the “third of the third” most to the right or most to the left who come out to vote — the 10 percent at each of the two extremes of the political spectrum. Making things worse, in most states, laws prohibit independents — who are not registered with either party and who make up a growing proportion of the electorate — from voting in primaries at all.
The phenomenon of primaries’ pulling people to the extremes seems more prevalent in the Republican Party, where centrists and moderates are increasingly rare, as a result of a combination of factors since the 1970s — the shift of Southern states toward Republican control, the mobilization of evangelical voters around social issues, anti-tax movements in California and elsewhere, and the rise of conservative talk radio and other news media.
The inherent problem with Schumer’s logic is that if closed primaries are responsible for extreme candidates pervading the political process, what does he have to fear? After all, if they only represent 10% of the electorate, they will easily be defeated and repudiated. Moreover, is Schumer suddenly concerned about the electoral viability and political future of the Republican Party? As the lead partisan Democrat, wouldn’t he celebrate the self-destruction of his opposition?
All of these questions are obviously self-explanatory. Chuck Schumer would like to go back to the days when Republicans were exclusively controlled by the likes of Bob Michael and Bob Dole. He wants Republicans to continue bringing a Lamar Alexander or a Thad Cochran to a Chuck Schumer fight. He doesn’t want Republicans to actually fight his liberal agenda with equal and opposing force. That is why he wants to implement a system to preempt the election of conservatives like Ted Cruz or Chris McDaniel.
Implicit in this op-ed is the sense that Schumer doesn’t fear Republicans like Lamar Alexander, Thad Cochran, Mitch McConnell, and Pat Roberts. He knows that they stand for nothing, appeal to nobody, and will ultimately never pursue a conservative agenda in a meaningful way. They will continue to perpetuate their own power, and even grant vacuous gestures to their conservative voters when it is convenient, but they will never fundamentally undermine the growth of government. And Chuck Schumer would like to keep it that way.
Page 3 of 131«12345...102030...»Last »