Author Archive for Justin Arnold

Mr. Arnold is a long time constitutional conservative. He holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree in English Literature from the University of Iowa. Over the last few years he has been involved in numerous political campaigns, most recently serving as campaign manager for an Iowa House candidate and serving as a city chair for Tom Latham. He is self-employed, running a small business in Ankeny, Iowa where he resides with his wife.

The 2012 Presidential Debates: When Moderators Aren’t Moderate

Lost in the sea of coverage following Mitt Romney’s selection of Paul Ryan as his running mate, was the news that the moderators for the three Presidential debates, and one VP debate, were also selected.

There is a certain kind of news one receives that falls into the category of “this may or may not be bad—but it can’t be good”.  For Republicans, learning of the moderators that will be at the helm for these four debates certainly earns this distinction.

In order of appearance they are- Jim Lehrer (PBS News Hour), Martha Raddatz (VP Debate-ABC News), Candy Crowley (CNN), and Bob Schieffer (CBS News).

Since the Romney campaign had to sign off on each moderator, it is hard to imagine that they could not …


The Hispanic Vote In November

Being the fastest growing group of Americans in our evenly ideologically divided country means that Hispanic-Americans will have a disproportionately larger impact on the November elections than their percentage of the population suggests—and it has the absolute potential to spell defeat for down ballot Republicans and Mitt Romney.

Digging into the polling and census data on Hispanic-Americans reveals two factors that have been overlooked in much of the political analysis—1) Obamacare will likely seal up the Latino vote for President Obama, and 2) they are motivated by different issues than other Americans.

While every American has the absolute right to vote for a candidate using whatever reasons they choose, the fact of the matter is that the Hispanic community has uniquely much more to gain …


Healthcare Fallout: Obama’s Growing List of Coalitions

The bedrock of winning elections at every major level of politics is building coalitions of supporters for whom you can count on to head to the polls and cast a vote for you.  Especially in a country as large and non-monolithic as ours, coalition building on some level is a requirement for victory and often explains why politicians are so willing to speak often, but say very little.

A close look at President Obama’s effort in this area reveals that he has elevated this process to an art form—but far from art, what he has created is an ugly picture beneficial to himself, but terrible for America.

While the Supreme Court’s ruling on Thursday to uphold the Affordable Care Act certainly carries the negatives of …


In the Age of the Selfish Voter

In a Representative Democracy, voting for a particular political candidate or philosophy is the most impactful way a citizenry can change their country.  While the “who” a person votes for is what actively shapes a Republic, digging into the motivation behind that vote is far more telling, and ultimately reveals far more about ourselves and where we are heading.

As government involvement in Americans day-to-day lives has expanded, the possible motivating factors at play driving each citizens vote has also expanded—and the effects of this have been devastating.  Boiled down to the most basic level, there are two motivations that influence a political vote—you can vote in what you believe is in the best interest of the country, or you can vote in your own …


Finally… Something We Can Agree On

The following is an op-ed I wrote some time ago that was edited slightly and then published by the Des Moines Register.  After turning on the television, which was tuned to MTV, while babysitting my young niece and nephew recently I was reminded how unfortunately relevant this piece still is.  The sections which are redacted below are ones that the Register was uncomfortable printing.  This perhaps make the point most poignantly.

 

The following words were spoken on the floor of the U.S senate by Illinois Senator Dick Durbin in the heat of the recent debate on The Fairness Doctrine:

It takes away the authority of the Federal Communications Commission to basically determine that radio and television stations use their Federal licenses in the public


And Then There Were Four…And Then There Were Two

In the week leading up to the South Carolina Primary the headline became—and then there were four.   Following the results of Saturday’s vote, it is becoming increasingly clear that the headline going forward will be—and then there were two.

At the heart of the wild ride that this nominating process has been is a reality that Newt Gingrich referenced in his victory speech Saturday night.  The four candidates left are all from different backgrounds and each is giving voice to unique portions of the Republican ideology.  Like most Republicans this cycle, how this cast of characters interplays with my specific political stances has made for a very difficult decision in where to place my support and who to root for.  Here is


Willie Nelson and Walking Toward Gingrich

“After carefully considering the whole situation, I stand with my back to the wall. And walking is better, than running away…and crawling ain’t no good at all”

Willie Nelson—Lyrics to “Walking” (1974)

While not known for his astute political analysis, with these lyrics Willie Nelson has managed to perfectly describe the conundrum myself and millions of other voters face in selecting a candidate to support for president amongst the Republican field.

For months now GOPers have been carefully considering the whole situation, and have yet to settle on anyone. With the voting only two weeks away a majority of those undecided now officially are standing with their backs against the wall.

In this regard I am no different—laid here are the reasons I am currently …


Why the Des Moines Register Shouldn’t Bother Endorsing A Republican This Year

While not big news that Iowa Republicans don’t wait with bated breath for the Des Moines Register to anoint a Republican candidate the cream of the presidential crop, in recent years their recommendations have barely risen above laughable fodder. Since we could all use some comic relief from this seemingly endless campaign season, let’s take a look back at the Register’s recent forays into Presidential advocacy. What follows are two main reasons, among many others, why they should stick to merely reporting on the political pulse of Iowa—instead of trying to alter it.

Reason #1 – A Sketchy, Schizophrenic History

While nearly all the data on editorial board endorsements show that they have a miniscule impact, if any at all, well over 70% of newspapers …


Ethanol And Immigration

Four months ago as the Republican field began to form and potential candidates began poking around Iowa, a major issue they were forced to address was ethanol. Thankfully the conversation has since developed from a fringe stereotypical issue like ethanol to more serious and pressing issues like illegal immigration.

If in a vacuum and in absence of other big problems ethanol subsidies may be a valid issue to talk about.  A variety of factors, however, make it a silly topic to debate. First, the economy is in tatters and we have seen the result of politically driven subsidies on the other side with the Solyndra debacle. Second, we are now over 15 trillion dollars in debt and, beyond being irresponsible, pumping borrowed money to prop …


CNN Debate Recap: A Complete Score Of The Top Four

In all The Conservative Reader’s previous debate reviews we have extended the courtesy of including an analysis and grade for all the candidates on stage. With now a mere 42 days until the Iowa Caucuses, the time for such courtesy has passed and the day has come to separate the candidates from the contenders.

The following is a recap of the performances of the candidates that are realistically contending to win Iowa. We made this distinction by including only those polling over 10% in the Hawkeye state—in other words Newt Gingrich, Mitt Romney, Ron Paul, and Herman Cain. They are listed below in order of how well each did from best to worst.

1st)—Newt Gingrich (Art)

Newt again demonstrated his ability to speak with …


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