Saturday, December 03, 2011

Interview with The American Pundit

Pundit Press is pleased to present its 48th interview in our on-going series.  Today we are lucky enough to have the founder of The American Pundit, Stephan Tawney, answer some of our questions.
The American Pundit is a rising conservative site that is personally one of my favorite sites.  In fact, I actually have it bookmarked on my computer.  So, without further ado:

When did you found The American Pundit and why?

The American Pundit was soft-launched in 2006 but started to be regularly updated in 2007. This was in response not only to the Democratic takeover of Congress but the pending presidential election, which it was already clear would be a difficult one for our side of the aisle.

What is your favorite part about running a website? What is the worst part?

The best part? It provides a channel for the venting I used to direct towards the television. It also allows me to connect with like-minded people. Worst part? It can start to take over your life. At a certain point you have to force yourself to walk away for a while, clear your head, and get reacquainted with the non-political side of life. Otherwise it consumes you.

Where do you see your site one year from now?

A year from now I hope to be writing about the desperate actions of a lame duck president during his final days in office.

Do you have a favorite candidate for 2012 yet? If so, why?

I'm leaning towards Newt Gingrich for the moment, though I readily concede he was not my first...or second...or third choice. I like that he does something too many Republicans have been afraid to do: Reject the premise of a question from a hostile moderator or interviewer. Whether I still support him a week or two from now isn't clear. But I'm leaning towards him for now.

Do you believe the Republican nominee will defeat President Obama come 2012?

Frankly, I find too many Republicans have become complacent, assuming the next election is a done deal. It's not. You look at everything that has happened and Barack Obama still has a half-way decent approval rating. As one of my favorite bloggers, Allahpundit, remarked the other day: Despite everything going on in American and around the world, Obama's approval remains just a few positive news cycles away from being above water.

Can we beat Obama? Absolutely. Not only can we beat him, but we can do so resoundingly. But that will take a nominee who can attack both aggressively and effectively. It will take a competent party machine with the structure in place to get out the vote (GOTV). It will take effective marketing. It will take support from third-party groups. It will likely take record-breaking sums of money. It will take dedicated volunteers. But most of all it will require our spreading the truth of the Obama presidency far and wide.

Looking at the way that President Obama has "led" our country, is he doing worse, better, or equal to what you were expecting?

Unfortunately, President Obama is doing just as badly overall as I thought he would. I'm proud to say I recognized from early on that he was from outside mainstream American politics -- that he would push disastrous policies. That he would make President Clinton look conservative.

Is there an issue that you think the Administration is intentionally ignoring or sweeping under the rug?

Goodness. For starters, gay marriage. We're told the president's view is "evolving". In other words, he doesn't want to take a firm position until he sees how things shake out. Another issue would be Guantanamo Bay. He was going to close that within the first year, then reality set in. Now its future is in political limbo. True to his record he likes to vote "present" a lot.

Is there anything else you would like to add?

It's my sincere hope that Americans understand how consequential 2012 will be. We're at a crossroads in America. This is a defining moment in the history of our country. To quote (rather extensively, if I may) from Ronald Reagan's famous 1964 address "A Time for Choosing":

"Not too long ago two friends of mine were talking to a Cuban refugee, a businessman who had escaped from Castro, and in the midst of his story one of my friends turned to the other and said, "We don't know how lucky we are." And the Cuban stopped and said, "How lucky you are! I had someplace to escape to." In that sentence he told us the entire story. If we lose freedom here, there is no place to escape to. This is the last stand on Earth. And this idea that government is beholden to the people, that it has no other source of power except to sovereign people, is still the newest and most unique idea in all the long history of man's relation to man. This is the issue of this election. Whether we believe in our capacity for self-government or whether we abandon the American revolution and confess that a little intellectual elite in a far-distant capital can plan our lives for us better than we can plan them ourselves."

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