Category: Republican Party

Should elected party officials endorse candidates before the primary?

Earlier this week, I received a press release with the following redacted endorsement:
xxx, Iowa– xxx County Republican chairman xxx today endorsed xxx for the 2012 Republican presidential nomination.

This notification stirred me to think about the question “Should elected party officials endorse candidates before the primary?”. As Chairman of the Polk County Republican Party for the period 2009-2010, I made a personal decision that I would not endorse primary candidates for local or statewide offices, but my tenure did not cover a presidential cycle. Should the rules be different for Iowa’s “1st in the Nation” presidential caucus?

I don’t believe there is a clear answer to this question. The best I can do is to share some anecdotal experiences from my time as Chairman …


New Hampshire Debate Recap: Bachmann Belongs, Santorum Shines, and Newt Successfully Re-Boots

Seven Republican Presidential contenders took the stage in New Hampshire Monday night in attempts to sway the primary electorate in their favor. Though the performances of all were respectable, their level of success in making their cases was varied. The following is a recap of what went down, who went up, who maintained, and what surely raised some eyebrows.

The Format and The Field

In general CNN did a nice job making the debate informative and substantive. What did not work was attempting to do away with the traditional bell or buzzer to limit each candidates response time and giving them only 30 seconds to answer the questions. Thirty seconds is simply not enough time for anyone to explain their position on complex issues, especially …


Pataki Sends Solid Conservative Message (Promoted From TCR: Iowa)

patakiI attended the event this evening and while George did not make any comments that sounded like “Hey, I want to be your next President”, this was definitely seemed like a pre-exploratory event. He had some great comments about the current state of affairs, and took questions which I also think he answered well. Some in New York (see comments on this post) have speculated about him running for other posts in that state, others have suggested he could be a possible contender for President in 2012. Even if he does not run for anything, he certainly provides a strong sense of some of the things the GOP needs to do to take back the People’s Government.

There were about 90 people at the …


The Path to Victory: Grassroots Republicanism

Let’s start, with a premise:

Every Republican president candidate since 1964 has had their level of success or failure, respectively, tied directly to the degree of voter perception that they have or have not turned their back on conservatism.

Consider the history of the thing… and it all flows one way:

  • Nixon billed himself a conservative, and successfully, even though in most respects he was a California Moderate, and came down more or less where  John McCain was in the most recent election; to the left of George W Bush.  Yet, Nixon had an electoral landslide in both elections. (Admittedly, the Democrats he ran against were a laughable lot, which didn’t hurt him.)
  • Bush 41 figured if he bent over forward enough, the left would

Which Way Should Conservatism Go? Well, How About We Try ‘toward Conservatism’?

You’re going to hear quite a bit from the left over ‘the death of conservatism’ over the next few weeks. But they’ve got it wrong. I say, what we’ve got is the death of compromised conservatism as espoused by George W Bush, his father, GHW Bush, and by more recently, John McCain.

This morning, we see a post from Helen Valois at Renew America, who calls this ‘conservative conservatism’. I can quibble with the name she chooses, but not her meaning…

What is conservative conservatism? It is a commitment to playing a good defense (or rather — except for the one, brief, shining moment of Governor Palin’s acceptance speech — a pretty flawed defense) when your opponents have gone decisively


Stevens Guilty

I am not surprised at the guilty verdict handed down against US Senator Ted Stevens (R-Alaska) on seven counts of making false statements.  And nor should anyone else.  I stated earlier in the year that Alaskan Republicans needed to find another candidate, but they failed.  It amazes me that people like Ted can imagine that they are not only above the law, but that in the midst of failure they should continue on with their struggle for power when they should be focusing on dealing with the issue at hand… planning a appeal.   From The Hill:

The senator vowed to “fight this unjust verdict with every ounce of energy I have” and said he would return home to defend his seat.

“I am innocent. 


Polk County Iowa GOP Fest

I just got home from the GOP Fest fundraiser here in Polk County.  I was a bit disappointed.

Don’t get me wrong.  I thought the speakers were great, the food was good.  The governor of Minnesota, Tim Pawlenty, gave an encouraging stump speech for McCain and Palin.

It’s just that the event was so lightly attended.

I walked in expecting to see a couple of hundred people or more.  I don’t think we broke seventy-five.  And probably half or more of the attendees were either candidates, current office holders, or party workers.  Both my wife and a co-worker of mine were there, which I appreciated.

On the positive side, I got to spend a few minutes with former Polk County GOP Chairman Ted …


Sarah Palin: “Don’t Blink”

Sarah Palin had her first big interview (6 parts) this week since being selected as John McCain’s running mate.  Paul F. Villareal made the video’s available at YouTube.

Of course, ABC played it for as much air time as they could… including repeating sections of the interview on 20/20 last night.

Let’s see, Thursday “World News”, Thursday “Nightline”, Friday “World News”, Friday “20/20”, Friday “Nightline”.  I’m assuming the advertising dollars were substantial.  If the new season of “Lost” had started by now, they might have included bits of the interview there as well.  I suppose they still can.

I’ve watched all of them, and my impression is:

  1. Sarah showed she can handle herself just fine.
  2. Palin is ready to take and articulate her positions and

Palin: Ready To Serve

Tonight’s speech by Sarah Palin was a smashing hit!

It was truly inspiring and gave me, and clearly the convention delegates, an even stronger sense of confidence that we will win in November.

Palin hit hard against the liberal media and Democrats who have been attacking her since Friday.

She provided an excellent case for the McCain/Palin ticket.

And she showed that she’s not the naive backwater girl that many would like you to think she is.

Following Rudy Giuliani’s speech, which itself was solid and inspiring, Palin brought what looked to me like the perfect politician: sensitive, knowledgeable, kind, and yet strong, agressive, and ready to strike where needed.

As Bithead states this evening, it’s no wonder the left is scared that they …


More Thoughts On Palin

The Left is going absolutely bonkers over the selection of Sarah Palin to run for Vice-President on the GOP ticket.

There’s also a lot of negative comments coming from the Right, although not quite as emotionally charged as those from the Left.

Christopher Patton of The Podium, aka DI Blog (that is, Daily Iowan, I believe) had a great sample headline which read “Sarah Palin is a Far-Right Ideologue“.   Right off I love the headline because it tells me we’ve got the right message coming out.   Patton is great reading if you’re looking for some reasoned content from the Left.  He manages to hit great points, which to someone from the Left sounds like heresy, and to someone on the Right sounds …


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