Maureen Dowd, columnist for the New York Times, whether you agree with her or not, is probably one of the most talented opinion writers in America today. She had the following to say in her April 8, 2014 column entitled “Jeb in the Vortex:” (nytimes.com)
Some of those close to Jeb say he’s serious about running and bringing back a civil tone to Republican politics. Others say he needs to act as though he’s running to keep his speaking fees high and options open. Rush Limbaugh thinks Jeb’s “act of love” comment was a gambit to tick off the Tea Party and “get the conservative backlash to him out of the way.”
Jeb thinks Republicans have lost their way. He may soon learn that a lot of conservatives think they have found their way — and it’s not the joyful, loving, government-can-be-a-force-for-good way. It’s the mean, cruel, gut-the-government way.
When this crowd thinks of a Thousand Points of Light, they’re thinking of torches as they march toward the Capitol.
Is Jeb right and have Republicans lost their way? It appears that many have done exactly that. The Republicans of yore were kinder, gentler and didn’t carry torches and pitchforks, as a rule.
Va. Republicans need to end their excuses for not expanding medicaid
REPUBLICANS IN Virginia’s House of Delegates are running out of excuses to refuse a huge pot of federal money for expanding health-care coverage to poor people. The legislature this week convened a special session, the product of House Republicans’ baseless refusal to compromise on the health-care expansion. Both Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe (D) and the state Senate have offered compromise plans, responding to the House GOP’s proffered reasons for opposition with more seriousness than they deserve. If the Republicans’ opposition is anything beyond thoughtless or cynical, they should come to the negotiating table now.
The special session was called to agree on next year’s budget. But the battle is over one piece of the state’s financial plan: whether to accept federal funds to expand eligibility for Medicaid, the federal-state partnership that offers health-care coverage to people below and around the poverty line. The Affordable Care Act’s coverage plan depends on this expansion, but the Supreme Court ruled that states could opt out. Virginia is one of those that hasn’t made up its mind, even though the federal government has committed to pay nearly the whole tab, in perpetuity, with tax dollars it is already collecting from every state, including Virginia, whether they expand or not.
Virginia Republican Party Treasurer Bob FitzSimmonds is drawing rebuke for a Facebook comment that used off-color language in reference to a female GOP legislator.
The episode unfolded Tuesday night during an online discussion of a JH Politics blog article about donor activity in the hotly contested Republican nomination process for the 10th Congressional District in Northern Virginia.
The race to replace retiring U.S. Rep. Frank Wolf has drawn considerable GOP candidate interest, including from Fairfax County Del. Barbara Comstock and Prince William County Del. Bob Marshall.
It was Comstock’s name that elicited FitzSimmonds’ online ouburst.
There was a time not too long ago when Republicans decried “activist judges.” Now they’re lamenting that judges are not being activist enough.
“Unfortunately, the courts have been reluctant to exercise their constitutionally conferred power,” House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.) proclaimed at a hearing Wednesday. He called on the courts “to check the president’s overreach,” and he complained that “the federal courts have read their own powers much more narrowly” than they should.
This newfound love of activist judges is the latest manifestation of what has been called Obama Derangement Syndrome: The president’s opponents are so determined to thwart him that they will reverse long-held views if they believe that doing so will weaken his stature.
PHOENIX — The Arizona Republican Party formally censured Sen. John McCain on Saturday, citing a voting record they say is insufficiently conservative.
The resolution to censure McCain was approved by a voice-vote during a meeting of state committee members in Tempe, state party spokesman Tim Sifert said. It needed signatures from at least 20 percent of state committee members to reach the floor for debate.
Sifert said no further action was expected.
Are those people out there nuts? What, pray tell, is McCain liberal about? Apparently there is a litmus test for real. AZ Republicans are really over the top with this gesture.
I thought Mike Huckabee was smarter than this. Obviously, he ignores the figurative speech about War on Women. He would be ok if we didn’t have the slut-shame attempt aimed at Sandra Fluke, aspirin remarks coming from GOP high donors, and countless bills aimed at defunding Planned Parenthood and other centers that receive Title X funding. He would be ok if there weren’t efforts to deny birth control to women going around every corner. He would be OK if literally hundreds of new laws weren’t passed in state legislatures by Republican politicians that restrict reproductive rights, via any hook or crook they could think of.
Pro-choice groups are howling over Governor-Elect Terry McAuliffe’s appointment of McDonnell’s health secretary, Dr. William A. Hazel, a moderate Republican. According to the Washington Post:
RICHMOND — Gov.-elect Terry McAuliffe will keep Gov. Robert F. McDonnell’s health secretary on as his own, a choice that could help the new governor sell Medicaid expansion to wary Republicans but that also infuriates some abortion-rights activists.
McAuliffe (D) will announce Wednesday that he will reappoint Dr. William A. Hazel Jr., an orthopaedic surgeon from Northern Virginia who served as secretary of health and human resources under McDonnell (R), two people familiar with the decision said.
Each respective goal is equally possible depending on the same single significant determinant: whether Ted Cruz stops talking.
While that thought settles in, we pause to note that, right now, the idea that Republicans could convince anyone that they should be allowed to deliver milk, much less hold the nation’s purse strings, seems remote. But things do change quickly around here. With the debt crisis postponed and the government up and running again — faith in the efficiency of which underscores the direness of our political straits — most Americans will settle into the season’s serial holiday distractions and move right along.
What lies ahead is the GOP’s internal struggle to determine which wing of the party prevails. And which wing prevails likely will determine the balance of power come 2014. Suffice to say, if Cruz’s voice drowns out the so-called establishment voices, Republicans may as well start investing in camels. The desert awaits.
Ted Cruz is just one little big-mouth. How can a freshman senator from Texas with little experience anywhere be as influential as he has been? How could David Koresh have been influential? How could Jim Jones convince hundreds of people to drink poisoned Kool Aid? It makes no sense to me. Are there people who simply have a Pied Piper type of personality?
Sarah Palin, who supported losing Senate candidate Steve Lonegan in New Jersey and the efforts to defund Obamacare in a government funding bill that led to the shutdown, said the focus after losing both fights should be on 2014.
“Friends, do not be discouraged by the shenanigans of D.C.’s permanent political class today. Be energized. We’re going to shake things up in 2014,” Palin wrote on her Facebook page early Thursday morning. “Rest well tonight, for soon we must focus on important House and Senate races. Let’s start with Kentucky — which happens to be awfully close to South Carolina, Tennessee, and Mississippi — from sea to shining sea we will not give up. We’ve only just begun to fight.”
I rarely defend Ken Cuccinelli. In fact, I can’t remember ever doing it but once before and I don’t really remember why I defended him, but I did. This time, I actually have to feel badly for him. How would YOU like to have to follow this clown?
According to the Washington Post, the following events occurred before Cuccinelli addressed the crowd:
People brought yellow lawn chairs with the motto “Don’t tread on me,” and at least one tricorner hat was visible in the crowd. John Whitbeck, 10th Congressional District Republican Committee chairman, raised eyebrows when he kicked off the festivities by telling a joke in which the head of the Jewish religion presented the pope with a long, elaborate document that the Jewish leader said was a bill for the last supper.
Former Secretary of State Colin Powell warned Republicans on Sunday that the strict voter identification laws they’re pursuing around the country will damage the party’s standing with growing blocs of voters.
The candidates have said it all. This line up is simply amazing. Not in my Virginia…please!!
The core problem is that there can be no re-branding of the Republican Party. How do you re-brand core beliefs? If you feel homosexuality is a sin, you can’t re-brand that. If you have strong anti immigration feelings, how is that re-branded? There is no magic wand that waves away these feelings. At best, Republicans can tone down the rhetoric and stop trying to legislate the social issues. Other than that, I simply don’t know what can be done.You are still talking about the same core party members and people who vote for their beliefs. One’s common core of values simply doesn’t re brand.
Many of the moderate Republicans are chased out of office these days to the screams and shouts of “RINO!” There doesn’t seem to be room for these people under the big tent any more. some of my favorite people are moderate Republicans, which should come as no shock. I eschew zealots of any flavor.
Perhaps what we will soon hear is the swan song for the Grand Old Party. I think that is sad. Perhaps we have already heard it, as the Old Guard dies off or goes out of office, often in disgust. My feeling is the Grand Old Party died off a few years ago and the swan song was sung. What’s left? The Republicans who I just don’t feel can claim the Grand Old Party logo.
While there are no catchy phrases for the Republicans of 2013, their image problems are readily apparent in national polls. The GOP has come to be seen as the more extreme party, the side unwilling to compromise or negotiate seriously to tackle the economic turmoil that challenges the nation.
The future of the Republican Party took some shots at its recent past on Thursday, as two top potential 2016 White House hopefuls made a conspicuous effort to distance themselves from the past two GOP presidential nominees.
Speaking to activists at the Conservative Political Action Conference at National Harbor, Sens. Rand Paul (Ky) and Marco Rubio (Fla) offered sharp, and only slightly veiled, critiques of Mitt Romney and John McCain, the two most recent men to carry the party standard in presidential elections.
“The GOP of old has grown stale and moss-covered,” Paul said. “I don’t think we need to name any names here, do we?”