12/15/11

2nd Quote of the Day – 12/15/11

Hat Tip: Jay Elliott

“…the end of all government is the good and ease of the people, in a secure enjoyment of their rights”; but it must be remembered, that the rich are people as well as the poor; that they have rights as well as others; that they have as clear a right to their large property as others have to theirs which is smaller; that oppression to them is as possible and as wicked as to others. John Adams

MAKERS OF THE AMERICAN MIND, by Robert C. Whitmore, pp 131-32

12/15/11

Leadership Bid Reflects Growing Tea Party Influence in World’s Greatest Deliberative Body

By: Michael Johns

The tea party movement began in an unassuming way: A series of March 2009 conference calls of a couple dozen conservative and libertarian activists from across the nation. How far it has come. Yesterday, after taking back the U.S. House of Representatives in November 2010 and growing its rank and file members into the millions in less than three years, the movement made a bold but ultimately unsuccessful bid for a leadership position in the United States Senate.

With tea party support, U.S. Senator Ron Johnson (R-WI) challenged U.S. Senator Roy Blunt (R-MO) for vice-chairman of the Senate Republican Conference. With all 47 Republican Senators casting votes, Blunt won the vote narrowly, 25 to 22. But the tea party-supported Johnson challenge proves important symbolically as a demonstration that, while tea party-affiliated members of the U.S. House of Representatives have proven hugely influential in guiding the direction of that legislative body, support for the tea party movement and its policy agenda is growing in the U.S. Senate too.

Since the vote was conducted by secret ballot, no official list of how Republican Senators voted is available. But in garnering 22 votes, Johnson proved that the Republican minority of the U.S. Senate is increasingly sympathetic to tea party sentiments. Even in his home state of Missouri, Blunt failed to garner the support of the three Republican candidates now vying to face Democrat U.S. Senator Claire McCaskill in this November’s general election, a sign that Republican candidates fear alienating the increasingly powerful tea party movement, whose support is deemed critical in national, state and municipal primaries across the nation.

Following his electoral victory, Blunt suggested that he hopes to be responsive to the tea party movement’s policy agenda. “I hope that six months from now they’re not disappointed,” he said.

Several national tea party organizations and leaders had been vocal in support of Johnson’s bid for the leadership position.

This article by Michael Johns was written originally for Tea Party Insider and is reposted with their permission.

12/15/11

They’re not our “leaders”, they’re our representatives. Period.

By: Andrea Shea King
The Radio Patriot

Does it rankle you as much as it does me when you hear others refer to those jamokes in Congress as our “leaders”? Excuse me? When did the man or woman I voted for (or not) become my elected “leader”?

Anyway, that’s not why I’m writing this post. I am writing this post to point out the danger inherent in a bill the House passed today and the Senate will be voting on tomorrow.

It’s Senate #1867, the provision that further cements the illegal authority of the federales to scoop any of us off the street or out of the sanctity of our homes and detain us indefinitely without due process (trial) if they think we have committed a “belligerant act” until the “end of hostilities”. Really? The measure violates our Constitutional rights under 5th and 5th Constitution to due process and a fair and speedy trial by a jury of our peers.

On tonight’s radio show, I played this clip of Glenn Beck’s interview with Sen. Mike Lee (R) of Utah who expressed his deep concerns about it.

After the show, I came across this segment of Judge Andrew Napolitano’s Freedom Watch program in which he talked about it with Sheriff Richard Mack of the Oathkeepers.

The Senate votes on this tomorrow. What are you gonna do about it???

12/15/11

Obama Campaign Collecting GOP Emails

From: Ask Marion

This is really disturbing – especially after what went down with the Chrysler dealerships. They closed the dealerships and confiscated their property because they gave to republican campaigns. This is probably typical and only the beginning of what Team Obama and the Progressive Left are going to try to do throughout this campaign and beyond if they win!

Watch the other hand my friends~

Obama Campaign Collecting GOP Emails

by Keith Koffler on December 14, 2011, 10:13 am

The Obama presidential campaign is launching an effort to collect Republican email addresses by inviting its supporters to submit information about their Republican associates to the Obama 2012 website.

The effort could help the Obama campaign build a database that would enable it to target Republican voters during the general election campaign. But, more perniciously, it could also become part of an Democratic effort to influence Republican primary voters to select a candidate Democrats think Obama could most easily defeat.

The Democratic National Committee last month released a video that seemed designed to damage Mitt Romney, the GOP candidate feared most by the Obama campaign.

The Obama information collection effort is cast under the mischievous guise of asking Obama supporters to “have a little fun at the expense of a Republican in your life” by signing them up to get an email from the Obama campaign ribbing them for having “inspired” the Obama supporter to donate.

The result, however, is that the Obama campaign gets a new trove of Republican email addresses that it could never have collected through voluntary submissions.

From the Obama website:

Who inspires you to give?

This holiday season, we’re giving you a chance to have a little fun at the expense of a Republican in your life by letting them know they inspired you to make a donation to the Obama campaign.

Simply enter their name and email address below. Then, we’ll send them a message letting them know they inspired you to donate.

Thank you for supporting this campaign, and happy holidays.

Important: By making a donation today, you’ll be automatically entered for a chance to have dinner with Barack and Michelle Obama. By clicking on the “Submit” button below or otherwise participating in the promotion, you agree to be bound by these Official Rules and represent that you satisfy all of the eligibility requirements.

The effort is being supported by emails from the campaign to members of the vast Obama 2012 email list urging them to participate.

One message, from Deputy Campaign Manager Julianna Smoot, also invites donors to buy something from the Obama 2012 store for their Republican friend.

Really want to fire up your GOP friends? Buy them a gift from the 2012 store. I recommend the birther mugs — they get the message across pretty well.

The email was sent Tuesday. If the Obama supporter sends the gift directly to their Republican friend, then the campaign has a new personal address for its database.

Source: White House Dossier

12/15/11

The Media Obsession with and Abuse of Polls

By: Roger Aronoff
Accuracy in Media

Before a single vote has been cast for the Republican presidential nomination, “the lead” has changed hands five or six times. At one point or another, Rick Perry led, Herman Cain led, Michele Bachmann led, Mitt Romney led, and the current leader is Newt Gingrich. But the obsession with all of these polls serves to take the place of real journalism and analysis, and turns this very serious process into another reality show. We should be very skeptical of most polls, and observant of how the media try to use them to shape our opinions, rather than reflect them. In addition, the liberal media are eager to have a role in picking the candidate who they look most forward to pummeling in a general election against President Obama.

For example, a look at what the polls said in the last three open nominating campaigns makes a strong case for the media to spend far less time trumpeting and analyzing them. Exactly four years ago this week, based on polls taken from December 14-16, 2007, just weeks before the Iowa Caucus and New Hampshire primary, here is what the polls were telling us:

First, for the Democrats, according to a Gallup poll, Hillary Clinton led Barack Obama by a margin of 45% to 27% in a national poll of Democrats and Independents who leaned Democratic. This is approximately the same lead that Newt Gingrich has today, according to the latest NBC/Wall Street Journal poll. Gingrich leads 40% to 23%, actually one point less than what Hillary led Obama by at this point. The latest Gallup poll shows a 37% to 22% lead for Gingrich.

One thing most of these polls have in common is that they interview more Democrats than Republicans, and claim to adjust by “weighting” to account for the difference. But for example, in the above mentioned NBC/WSJ poll, which shows both Romney and Gingrich in a statistical tie (within the margin of error) with Obama, of the 100 people polled, 42 voted for Obama last time, while only 32 voted for McCain. So right there, the results become skewed. The weighting process generally doesn’t really adjust sufficiently, though the pollsters would argue otherwise, especially when you consider that the largest number of those polled identify themselves as Independents.

In the Gallup poll from the same days in 2007, December 14-16, polling just the Republican and Republican-leaning voters, Rudy Giuliani led Mike Huckabee by 27%-16%, with John McCain in 3rd at 14%. Of course, the nominees ended up being Barack Obama and John McCain.

What about the previous open election, in 2004? George W. Bush was running for re-election, but there was an open process for a Democratic nominee. In a Gallup poll taken January 9-11 of 2004, before Iowa or New Hampshire, Howard Dean led with 25%, followed by former General Wesley Clark at 19%, and eventual nominee John Kerry had 9%. So clearly, in the last three examples in presidential primaries, polls taken shortly before the first votes were cast proved to be unreliable predictors of who would eventually get the nomination.

A USA Today Gallup Poll shows Gingrich and Romney winning 12 swing states over Obama.

Polls have something to offer for everyone’s liking. Statistics can be massaged to make the point that the analyst wants. But there are different kinds of polls. As I’ve shown, these presidential primary polls that are more popularity contests within political parties are not good predictors of what the voters are going to do. But there are polls, such as approval polls, that are measuring ideological commitments, in which the same questions are asked month after month, year after year, and trust is built up or eroded over longer periods of time. And even then there are often contradictions.

Within the same new CBS poll, we have findings that 75% say the country is on the wrong track while only 21% say it’s on the right track. But 57% believe the President is a strong leader. And once again, the numbers are stacked to favor the Democrats, as 32% of those polled were Democrats while 27% were Republicans. Obama’s job approval rating was 44%, with 46% disapproval, which as Bob Schieffer pointed out on the CBS Evening News the day they released this poll on December 9, “you have to go all the way back to Jimmy Carter to find a president whose approval rating was this low at this point in his presidency.” Scott Pelley, the news anchor, said “the weak economy is largely to blame.”

When Obama was asked by Steve Croft for the following Sunday’s “60 Minutes” about the economy, he replied, “we did all the right things to prevent a great depression and to get the economy growing again and to get job creation going again. But it hasn’t made up for the hole that was created in those six, nine, 12 months before my economic policies took effect.”

But the poll showed that just 33% of Americans approve of the way President Obama is handling the economy, while 60% disapprove. Only 28% believe that Obama has made “real progress fixing the economy” and only 37% felt he had prevented a deeper recession, while 49% felt that he hadn’t. 51% disapprove of “the President’s signature accomplishment in office, health care reform, while only 35% approve. Just 13% think it will help them—and 32% think it will hurt them.”

As to deserving to be re-elected president, 41% said yes, and 54% said no, while only 32% said they have a clear idea of what Obama wants to accomplish if re-elected, while 66% said they don’t.

But Obama regularly takes solace in the fact that his ratings are much higher than those of Congress, which he and his spokesmen, both in the White House and in the media, suggest is because it is a Republican controlled Congress. Republicans do control the House, but not the Senate, which as I pointed out in a recent AIM Report, has been the half of Congress that has really been derelict in its duties, mainly by not having passed a budget since April of 2009, but also for allowing more than a dozen jobs bills passed by the House to languish in the Senate.

Besides, Congress’s approval ratings one year ago, in December 2010, after being run by Democrats for four years, was at 13% with 83% disapproval, so that hasn’t changed much. But then there was no gridlock. With a year of near-gridlock behind them, the latest numbers are 11% approval and 82% disapproval. Part of that is the notion that people like their own Representative, but not Congress as a whole, which moves too slowly, and deliberatively, for most everyone’s liking.

The current polls may well prove to be a dead-on predictor of this year’s Republican nominating process, and Newt Gingrich might wrap it up by March. But if recent history is a guide, expect the unexpected in the coming months. New rules in place by the Republicans promise to make this race different than past races. The GOP has proportional primaries and caucuses until April 1st, after which each state can decide if it wants to offer winner-take-all or proportional. Proportional means that someone like Michele Bachmann or John Huntsman could have 50 or 100 delegates needed for the nomination, and thus they may decide to not drop out, but rather to take their delegates to the nominating convention in Tampa, Florida in August, to possibly have some bargaining power. If no one has enough delegates to win the nomination in the first round, then delegates are free, meaning they could switch candidates, or the convention could draft someone not in the mix, like Chris Christie, Jeb Bush or Paul Ryan. Time to buckle up and see where this ride takes us.

Roger Aronoff is the Editor of Accuracy in Media, and can be contacted at [email protected].