Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Fracking, Drilling and "Promiscuous Womenfolk"

Nearly everything has been blamed on horizontal hydraulic fracturing. Generally, these claims are isolated to economic, environmental and health concerns, but the rubicon of absurdity has officially been eclipsed, and now fracking is being blamed for increasing the incidence of sexually transmitted diseases. Wait, that is a health related issue, I suppose.

With "fracking" as the euphemism of choice, it was only a matter of time before the drilling technique became a double entendre.

This from House Democrat Policy Committee Chairman Mike Sturla (D-Lancaster)

“Also, aside from building roads so their trucks can get to drill sites and doing a little stream work to mitigate damage from their road building, exactly what are all those things the drillers are doing for the local communities? Patronizing the bars at night? Driving up the cost of rental housing? Spreading sexually transmitted disease amongst the womenfolk? Causing school districts to ask local governments to ban truck traffic on local roads during school bus pick-up and drop-off times so kids don't get killed? Upgrading emergency preparedness equipment to handle a well blow out? Running compressor stations that have decibel levels equal to a jet engine?...Really community-oriented stuff...”

Desperate times call for desperate measures I suppose. Statements like this strike me as exceedingly desperate!

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August 16 Wisconsin Recall Results

--UPDATE (10:52 PM)--

Jim Holperin (D) - 20,508 - 53%
Kim Simac (R) - 18,140 - 47%

71% of precincts reporting...

UPDATE (10:50 PM)--

Not looking for Republicans in the 12th State Senate District:

Jim Holperin (D) - 17,251 - 54%
Kim Simac (R) - 14,869 - 46%

UPDATE (10:42 PM)--

Final results from Wisconsin's 22nd State Senate District:

Bob Wirch (D) - 23,405 - 57%
John Steitz (R) - 17,703 - 43%

-UPDATE (10:39 PM)--

Bob Wirch has won his recall election with 56% of the vote.

--UPDATE (10:34 PM)--

Holperin (D) - 12,009 - 54%
Simac (R) - 10,176 - 46%

46% of precincts reporting.

Wirch (D) - 18,676 - 55%
Steitz (R) - 15,013 - 45%

78% of precincts reporting.

--Original Post--

The votes has been cast and the results are being announced from the final two recall elections in Wisconsin. These two recalls involve incumbent Democrats who fled the state to avoid voting on Scott Walker's budget earlier this year.

State Senate District 12:

Jim Holperin (D) - 11,961 - 54%
Kim Simac (R) - 10,106 - 46%

45% of precincts reporting.

State Senate District 22:

Bob Wirch (D) - 18,017 - 56%
John Steitz (R) - 14,340 - 44%

70% of precints reporting.

Stay tuned for updates.

Democrat State Senator Jim Holperin in Peril

Just one week after the Democratic Party; labor/teacher unions, and progressive groups ousted two, but not enough Republicans, to regain control of the Wisconsin State Senate, the Wisconsin GOP might just be able to return the favor tonight.

Meet Jim Holperin. In 2008 he was elected to the State Senate with just 51% of the vote when Obama won the state by nearly ten points, and in 2011 he deserted his senatorial obligations by fleeing to Illinois when his party realized Scott Walker's budget could not be defeated by legislative means.

His district has been trending Republican for a number of years, but he was lucky enough not to be on the ballot last November when the wave brought Republicans universal control of Wisconsin's government.

As you probably guess by now, Holperin's luck has run out.

Recent GOP polling suggests his campaign leads Tea Party activist Kim Samic by only two points, and that doesn't take into account the oddities of recall/special elections that usually favor the challenging party, such as strong voter turnout among activists and momentum.

I have a feeling, as in the words of the Black Eyed Peas, tonight's gonna be a good night for Republicans in Wisconsin.

What say you?

Monday, August 15, 2011

The Current Status of the Republican Field

Up until a few months ago, President Obama seemed assured of reelection in 2012. In a short time span, several things have happened.

His left wing base has turned against him for failing to stand up to the conservatives in Congress, and for failing to successfully enact the progressive agenda. Those to his right continue to attack him, gaining increasing credibility by pointing to serious economic problems, a stimulus that failed to work, high unemployment, excessive spending, rising debt, and a failed foreign policy. His 2008 campaign rhetoric now looks empty and even silly. His poll numbers are declining, as the citizens of this nation, fairly or not, blame him for our many problems. His image as the messiah has been sufficiently undermined that the media now feels free to critique and attack him.

Thus the election of 2012 has gone from being a sure thing for Obama a mere six months ago, to being about the likely defeat of Obama. We are seeing repeated analogies to incumbent President Jimmy Carter’s loss in 1980. Many now believe that virtually any Republican can beat him. As a result, the Republican race is no longer about choosing another loser, another Bob Dole or Barry Goldwater, but quite possibly selecting the next President of the United States.

What are the Republicans offering? After the failure of any of the other candidates to draw blood from Romney in the debate last Thursday, the strong win by Michelle Bachmann of the Iowa straw poll last Saturday, the entry of Texas Governor Rick Perry into the race, and the withdrawal of Governor Tim Pawlenty, we are now effectively in a three way race, between Mitt Romney, Rick Perry, and Michelle Bachmann. Each candidate has strengths and plenty of weaknesses.

Mitt Romney seems stale. He ran for and lost the nomination in 2008, and since then has been campaigning non-stop. More importantly, he is not known for having strong convictions on issues important to Republicans, and has a propensity to shift his positions on an ad hoc basis. Douthat points out that he has avoided “taking a single courageous or even remotely interesting position.” The adjective opportunistic sticks to him and is unlikely to go away.

Rick Perry does not lack for convictions. He is a fighter who understands the right wing electorate. He can boast that half of the new jobs in the nation under Obama’s reign happened in Texas while he was governor But he may not have an understanding of the moderate voter who makes up the bulk of the US electorate. Further, he is another conservative from Texas, too soon after George W. Bush. And the country likely will want a more moderate figure, not a fire-breathing right winger. Yes, Ronald Reagan was also considered far right. But Reagan was eminently likeable, folksy, a beloved figure, unlike Perry. And if Perry runs as a right-winger, which is almost assured, and Obama moves to the center, Barack Obama will seem like the better bet to the electorate.

Michelle Bachmann has distinguished herself by her energy, intelligence, and political savvy. She has some drawbacks, including some major gaffes and rewriting of history. But is the nation ready to elect a woman, not to mention a tea party leader?.

In recent years, we have been told that after the 1928 Al Smith debacle, we would never elect a Catholic. John F. Kennedy disproved that. And we were similarly told the nation would never elect an African-American; Barack Obama disproved that. There is no reason why we would not elect a woman; Hillary Clinton came very close. And as for the tea party issue, the answer to that is Ronald Reagan, who represented the same people and issues, though called by a different name.

Bachmann has been labeled a spoiler. Yet, considering her entry onto the national stage in such a short time, and her other considerable attributes, I consider her every bit as likely to secure the nomination as the other two.

Are there other candidates who might yet enter the race? People who have said they are not running, political figures like Paul Ryan, Marc Rubio, or Mitch Daniels, may yet change their minds. And then there is New Jersey Governor Chris Christie. Writing in today’s New York Times, Ross Douthat makes a compelling case for Christie to join the race for the Republican nomination.

According to Douthat Christie has “accomplished more, against more determined opposition, amid more media scrutiny and with more resilient poll numbers”, than any of the other current political figures.

Christie is ideologically more moderate than the other Republican candidates. However, for conservatives his combative style and his success in taking on the public unions in New Jersey more than makes up for this “flaw”. (He has called the state’s teachers’ union a “political thuggery operation.”)

A politically moderate middle-class Catholic from the Northeast may be a welcome relief from the rightist Bush-Perry-Sunbelt precincts. And his centrist leanings may serve him well in the general election.

Chris Christie may be made to order for the task of President of the United States. But will he run? To do so may be a huge gamble on his part, cutting short his career should he lose. But if he wins? In that case, America will be the winner.

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Image of the Day

Comes to us via the Texas Monthly.

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Undeclared Voter

After Tim Pawlenty's announcement that he would no longer seek the 2012 Republican nomination for President yesterday morning, I once again found myself searching for somebody to support in the upcoming primary battle that could select the 45th President of the United States.

I am leaning towards supporting Senator Santorum, due to his strong views on social and foreign policy issues, but I don't believe he will last in the primaries long enough for me to actually support in New York. And Rick Perry seems like a strong number two for me, but I do not know his foreign policy worldview yet.

So what am I to do?

The one candidate I really supported is now gone, and all the others - that are declared (hello, Pataki, where are you?) - I'm still not sure about. All I know is this - I hate remaining on the presidential sidelines - and I have to find a new candidate to support soon.

What say you?

The Jewish Vote in 2012

Electoral history tells us that Jewish voters tend to support the Democratic Party by wide margins, even though the Republican Party historically is more supportive of Israeli and Jewish interests abroad. Some predict this will change, due to younger Jews leaning Conservative, but most consider the vote locked in.

There has been increasing speculation that President Obama's raging anti-Israel attitude might cause portions of America's Jewish voting bloc to shift rightward and support the eventual Republican nominee, because we have basically become the party of Israeli interests by all barometers - and we're proud of it.

So that's why the Gallup survey released yesterday should send warning signs to President Obama's election team, because the interesting results s the potential for the greatest turnout among Jewish voters for the Republican Party since 1988.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Democrats Step Up Talking Points, Lies in Vain Attempt to Protect, Tout Obama

President Obama's approval rating has dropped below 40%.  The public is discontented with the corrupt ways of Washington.  Mr. Obama himself declared that things in our capital must change, that our politics are "broken" and that things must be more "civil."

So, how are he and his lackeys combating this?  By lying their asses off and being as "uncivil" as they possibly can.  This weekend alone, these dumbasses went on a tirade and said:

"While protecting tax breaks for the wealthy and big oil while proposing to end Medicare, slash Social Security and pile additional burdens on the middle class might win plaudits with the Tea Party, it's not remotely what the American people are looking for," Brad Woodhouse, Democratic National Committee Communications Director, stated.
"In a Republican field that has already pledged allegiance to the Tea Party and failed to present any plan that will benefit the middle class or create the jobs America needs to win the future, Governor Perry offers more of the same," Obama campaign spokesman Ban LaBolt said.

Democratic National Committee Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman-Schultz blathered, "That's how strangled by the Tea Party that they are, and that's not what Americans are looking for. They're looking for solutions...If anyone is in trouble, it's the Republican Party."

Later, Wasserman-Shultz confusedly said, "President Obama inherited a huge problem, the worst recession that we've had since the Great Depression, created by the policies, the failed policies of the previous Republican administration, where we went from a record surplus to a record deficit... And so working our way out of that problem is incredibly challenging. I think Americans are appreciative of the hard work and effort and accomplishment that President Obama has made."

You tell 'em, Debbie...
You tell 'em.

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Gallup: Obama Approval Drops Below 40%

It's about time. Honestly, what took so long:
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Video- Allen West Slams Ron Paul

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Tim Pawlenty Ending Presidential Bid

There are reports this morning that former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty is dropping out of the 2012 presidential race. Pawlenty has been slipping in the polls recently and finished third in Saturday's Iowa Straw Poll.

After his third place finish in Iowa, Pawlenty seemed upbeat about his campaign and gave no indication that he would end his presidential bid.

"I'm encouraged by our progress, and I'm so thankful for the thousands of Iowans who showed their support for my candidacy by voting for me in Ames.

"We are now moving onto the next phase of our campaign. Over the coming weeks we will be visiting New Hampshire, South Carolina and Florida while continuing to grow our already strong ground game in Iowa," Pawlenty said.

Pawlenty was singing a different tune on Sunday morning as he reportedly told staff members during a conference call, "we needed a boost from Ames that didn't happen."

The former Minnesota Governor also told ABC's "This Week" show, "the pathway forward for me doesn't really exist and so we're going to end the campaign."

There will be more from Pundit Press as this story develops throughout the day.

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Saturday, August 13, 2011

Pawlenty's Campaign is Dead? WHAT?!?!?!?!?!

The media's reaction to Tim Pawlenty's third place finish in the 2011 Ames Straw Poll is both mystifying and aggravating to me, because I thought receiving 13.6% of the vote when the last poll had you finishing behind then unannounced candidate Texas Governor Rick Perry at 11% was pretty good - considering the pundits deemed Perry's entry Pawlenty's death.

Apparently, not so.

Michele Bachmann winning (her hometown state) by thousands of votes less than she claimed her campaign sold to supporters is the big news; not Tim Pawlenty fighting back from behind to finish respectably in Iowa, nor even Rick Santorum coming out of nowhere to place fourth with nearly 10% of the vote.

Maybe I'm the one looking at things wrong, but I hope everyone remembers that Mike Huckabee received just over 18% at the Ames Straw Poll in 2007, and he won the Iowa Caucuses by nearly ten percent over Romney several months later.

What say you?

Iowa Straw Poll Results- Bachmann Wins; Paul Comes in Second, Pawlenty in Third

In one of the first major parts of the Republican nomination process, we have a winner at the Iowa straw poll. Underneath are the winners, and other relevant numbers that have come out so far:

UPDATE- Complete, final numbers:

Michele Bachmann 4,823
Ron Paul 4,671
Tim Pawlenty 2,293
Rick Santorum 1,657
Herman Cain 1,456
Rick Perry 718
Mitt Romeny 567
Newt Gingrich 385
Jon Huntsman 69
Thaddeus McCotter 35
other write-ins 162

16,892 ballots were cast. Rick Santorum came in fourth. That's about 3,000 more than expected.
The Candidates
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Bachmann Wins Iowa Straw Poll

With nearly 17,000 ballots cast, Michele Bachmann has won the 2011 Iowa Straw Poll.

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A Call for Contributors

Pundit Press is slowly growing, in case you didn't hear. That's why we're asking for those that read the site and think that they should be heard if they would like to write for our blog. Your level of participation is up to you-- an article a day, an hour, or per week. It's a no-pay but rewarding experience.

We're looking forward to your response.

Send all inquiries to punditpress-at-gmail.com.

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Video: "It's Time for Rick Perry" Ad

Created by Students for Rick Perry:

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Iowa Straw Poll Results, With Video

Watch the Straw Poll live below:

Streaming live video by Ustream

Once the results are final, we will have it. Stay tuned!

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Rick Perry Announcement Video

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Watch Ames (Iowa) Straw Poll Video Live Streaming Feed


Video streaming by Ustream

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Rick Perry Announces He's Running for President; 'In it to Win It'

America, we may have a new front-runner:
Rick Perry, the conservative governor of Texas, declared himself a candidate for president on Saturday, shaking up the race for the Republican nomination to face Democratic President Barack Obama in 2012.

Perry made the announcement in a statement issued shortly before he was to address a gathering of conservatives in South Carolina to launch his campaign.

"It is time to get America working again," Perry said in the statement. "That's why with the support of my family and an unwavering belief in the goodness of America, I declare to you today my candidacy for president of the United States."

The three-term Texas governor has touted a record of job growth in Texas and also is known as a strident critic of federal power and an opponent of abortion rights and gay marriage. He is considered a strong fundraiser.

Opinion polls indicate Perry enters the race close on the heels of former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney, the early front-runner to win the 2012 Republican nomination.
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Photo of the day. Make that Month

From the Religion of Peace, care of Jihad Watch

And remember, Ron Paul thinks we are the problem!

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Herman Cain Attacked after Quoting Line from Pokemon Song

When talking about life in general and his campaign, which has gained momentum in the last several months, former-Godfather CEO Herman Cain said during the GOP debate this week, “A poet once said life can be a challenge, life can seem impossible, but it’s never easy when there’s so much on the line.”

Mr. Cain apparently did not know that this line was from a song in a Pokemon movie.  Despite this, I honestly see nothing wrong with using this line.  Sure, it's from a television show aimed at kids, but the message is good (particularly compared to a lot of messages contemporary shows spew) and it works for Mr. Cain.

To see for yourself, watch this video:

However, in the age we live in, anything is a "gotcha question."  NY Mag jumped all over Mr. Cain and quickly went into attack mode.  They called the quote "weird," "strange," and "bizarre."

They then wrote this idiotic "explanation" where they attacked Mr. Cain for no apparent reason, other than they don't like him:
Herman Cain saw the Pokémon movie with one of his grandkids in the summer of 2000 and was greatly moved by the "The Power of One." After a decade had gone by, he recalled the song and wanted to use it in his campaign, but he forgot where he heard it, mistakenly pegged it to the summer Olympics, and was too busy fighting the scourge of Sharia to look it up online. Then sometime in the past two months, he somehow came to believe that the song lyrics he had been quoting throughout the campaign were actually the words of some unnamed poet. It's not the most elegant explanation, but it's the only one we can come up with.
The Huffington Post, after hearing of the quote, wrote dismissively:
Is Herman Cain just extremely high-level performance art? You know, like Borat, or Joaquin Phoenix or something like that?
Looks like the Main Stream Media is at it again: attacking someone not on their character, not on their beliefs, not on their actions... but on a relevant quote that happens to be from a kid's flick.
Cain on tour
In a world where our unemployment is still over 9%, the economy is on the rocks, and our men and women in uniform are dying overseas everyday, this is the best thing that the Main Stream Media can whine about?  Their coverage of the story is much, much more disturbing than Mr. Cain quoting a movie.

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Shepard Fairey, Creator of "Obama Poster," Beaten Up by Left-Wing Radicals

Go figure. Danish left-wingers didn't care that Shepard Fairey "contributed" to liberalism and they didn't care that he is an Obama supporter. At a Mr. Fairey new exhibition in Copenhagen, Danish liberals found Fairey and beat him, leaving him with a black and bruised rib.

Why were these thugs so angry? Because Fairey recently created this mural in Denmark:

Liberals in Denmark were enraged by the creation, which Fairey stated that they misinterpreted. Similar to American liberals, these Danish left-wingers did not care that they did not understand the meaning of something. So, despite their misinterpretation, they decided to beat Fairey and a friend of his.

However, Fairey isn't one to report a crime and instead thought of his PR before the story came out. He stated, "The only thing I could see coming out of it was further media commentary like 'street artist whiner Shepard Fairey can't hold it down in a fight so he snitches to the cops."
Fairey in front of his famous creation
Because of this, the attack was reported Friday, instead of after it happened, several days ago.

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Ames Straw Poll Predictions

The all-important Ames straw poll will be held this afternoon in beautiful Iowa, where the candidacy of Tim Pawlenty is potentially on the line if he doesn't place first, or second among Republican faithful.

So what do I think is going to happen?

1. At least 15,000 Iowans will participate in the event - most of which will be organic.

2. Michele Bachmann will not perform as well as most political wizkids expect her to. Her campaign hasn't gained any ground in weeks and Thursday's debate performance did not help her.

3. Mitt Romney could very well come out of nowhere to finish in the top three, but my thoughts on this might be more reflexive to the belief that Mitt secretly purchased 2,500 tickets and his people will flood the event today.

4. Pawlenty - 1; Paul -2; Bachmann - 3 and Romney - 4.

What say you?

Republican Straw Poll Results, With Video

Watch the Straw Poll live below:

Streaming live video by Ustream

Once the results are final, we will have it. Stay tuned!

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Friday, August 12, 2011

Instapundit Hits Ten Years

One of the best sites on the internet hits ten years:

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Herman Cain to Land Vanilla Ice Endorsement?

You heard it here first, folks:
Alright stop, collaborate and listen. Vanilla Ice has some political insight to share.

The former rapper watched Thursday’s Republican presidential debate and shared his reactions on Twitter. His favorite GOP candidate so far? Herman Cain, Cain baby.

He tweeted: “I was impressed with Cain in the debate ? But not really convinced yet by anyone ??? 15 months to go ???”

Explaining that he’s “not that big into politics,” Vanilla Ice wrote, “I just wish someone could fix this mess of economy ???”
The tweets:

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Appeals Court: ObamaCare's Individual Mandate Unconstitutional

Oh, that has got to hurt:
A federal appeals court has struck down the requirement in President Barack Obama's health care overhaul package that virtually all Americans must carry health insurance or face penalties.

A divided three-judge panel of the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals on Friday struck down the so-called individual mandate, siding with 26 states that had sued to block the law.

But the decision didn't go as far as a lower court that had invalidated the entire overhaul as unconstitutional.

The states and other critics say the law violates people's rights. The Justice Department counters that the legislative branch was exercising a "quintessential" power.

An appeals court and three federal judges have upheld the law, and two have invalidated it. Experts say the debate ultimately will be decided by the U.S. Supreme Court.

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Uh-Oh: Obama's Disapproval Higher than Approval in... New York

Que ominous music for Obama's re-election chances:
New York State voters disapprove 49 - 45 percent of the job President Obama is doing, a huge drop from his 57 - 38 percent approval June 29 and the first time the president ever has had a negative score in New York, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released today.

Democrats approve 75 - 19 percent, down from 82 - 12 percent in June. Disapproval is 86 - 10 percent among Republicans, compared to a 74 - 23 percent disapproval in June, and 58 - 36 percent among independent voters, compared to a slightly positive 49 - 45 percent in June, the independent Quinnipiac (KWIN-uh-pe-ack) University poll finds.

Voters split 48 - 46 percent on whether President Obama deserves reelection and say 49 - 34 percent they would vote for him over an unnamed Republican.

"The debt ceiling hullaballoo devastated President Barack Obama's numbers even in true blue New York," said Maurice Carroll, director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute. "He just misses that magic 50 percent mark against a no-name Republican challenger."
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Ouch: Olbermann's TV Ratings 1/20 of O'Reilly in Same Time Slot

This certainly could not have happened to a nicer guy, but professional phony Keith Olbermann is not doing so well on his new station, Current TV.  Mr. Olbermann is now pulling 208,000 people per week to his show.  In contrast, Bill O'Reilly, in the same time slot on Fox News, averages about 800,000 people per day and 300,000 per day in his 11pm slot.
That's gotta smart, eh Keith?

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Vote: Who Won the GOP Debate Last Night?

Last night, eight Republican Presidential candidates debated the issues right before the Ames Straw Poll. They were, alphabetically, Michele Bachmann, Herman Cain, Newt Gingrich, Jon Huntsman, Ron Paul, Tim Pawlenty, Mitt Romney, and Rick Santorum.

Ms. Bachmann and Mr. Pawlenty got into a debate of their own, while Mr. Paul blamed the United States for Iran being our enemy. Mr. Gingrich complained of "Mickey Mouse" questions, while Mr. Romney said he would not eat Barack Obama's "dog food."
But the question is, to you, who won the debate last night? Was it the supposed front-runner Mitt Romney or the compelling Herman Cain? Could it have been Rick Perry, who did not participate, but may have benefited politically from it?

Vote below:

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Ron Paul Being Crazy at the Republican Debate Last Night

Paul stated, “Even our own CIA gives me this information that they have no evidence that they are working on a weapon.”

Dude, seriously?

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Postal Service Proposes Cutting 120K Jobs, Dropping Benefits

And it's all possible thanks to ObamaNomics:
The financially strapped U.S. Postal Service is proposing to cut its workforce by 20 percent and to withdraw from the federal health and retirement plans because it believes it could provide benefits at a lower cost.

The layoffs would be achieved in part by breaking labor agreements, a proposal that drew swift fire from postal unions. The plan would require congressional approval but, if successful, could be precedent-setting, with possible ripple effects throughout government. It would also deliver a major blow to the nation’s labor movement.

In a notice informing employees of its proposals — with the headline “Financial crisis calls for significant actions” — the Postal Service said, “We will be insolvent next month due to significant declines in mail volume and retiree health benefit pre-funding costs imposed by Congress.”

During the past four years, the service lost $20 billion, including $8.5 billion in fiscal 2010. Over that period, mail volume dropped by 20 percent.

The USPS plan is described in two draft documents obtained by The Washington Post. A “Workforce Optimization” paper acknowledges its “extraordinary request” to break its labor contracts.

“However, exceptional circumstances require exceptional remedies,” the document says.
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The Paul Forum

I wasn't fortunate enough to watch the entire Fox News Republican debate last night, but I did happen to catch the foreign policy round - and boy was I pissed about the way Fox coordinated that intense slug fest.

Fox didn't isolate Representative Ron Paul, and his kooky worldview, rather they encouraged him at every turn with more questions and more response time than the other candidates on stage. And when Senator Santorum was responding to one of Paul's outrageous claims on Iran - he was cut off at thirty seconds - but Paul's response was allowed to go over that by at least ten!

There is no way Paul should have been allowed to dominate the floor with his wildly anti-mainstream, and to be honest, anti-american worldviews. Fox News will look weaker in the end for allowing the kook in Texas to control the stage in Ames, Iowa.

What say you?

New Yorkers Are Smarter Than Environmentalist's Give Them Credit For

The environmentalist, big green noise machine have had the speakers turned up to eleven for the past year. The local media have done their part in parroting the distributed talking points. All at the same time hydraulic fracturing for natural gas will contaminate fresh water aquifers, pollute rivers, streams, lakes and ponds, worsen global warming, I mean climate change. Subject us all to radiation poisoning, despoil our roads and local economy and for good measure, kill our children.
Attempting to find any objective objective data on the subject proved elusive and required some significant research. Interestingly though, finding this information has proven easier than locating the studies supporting the contentions of the anti-fracking brigade.
With this in mind I was astounded by the results of a Quinnipiac poll that found a plurality of voters support drilling for natural gas in upstate New York by a 47-42 percent margin.
According to a new Quinnipiac poll, 47 percent of voters surveyed are in favor of natural gas drilling, while 42 percent are opposed. The poll found that people like the potential economic benefits of drilling more than they fear the possible environmental concerns, with 75 percent saying they believe fracking would bring more jobs to the state.
The vice president at Norse Energy Company and representative of the Independent Oil and Gas Association, says that the growing support shows that New Yorkers are becoming more educated about the entire process.
"I think they're becoming better informed not only on the economic benefits, but first and foremost on the safety of the operation," Dennis Holbrook said.
As remarkable as this result may be it is trumped by the breakdown. Predictably republicans favored drilling by a 67-20 percent margin and democrats oppose hydraulic fracturing, 52-35 percent. What jumps out at me is the NY City, upstate divide.
The Quinnipiac University survey found state voters back the drilling, 47-42 percent, with majority support in both the suburbs, 52-35 percent, and upstate, 51-39 percent.
City voters, however, oppose drilling, 50-38 percent, the poll found
Perhaps I shouldn't be surprised by this. I have argued previously that the vocal opposition to shale gas that has descended on local town and zoning board meetings is made up primarily of downstate transplants who don't want to see their idyllic, pastoral vision sullied by any "dirty" industry. Let me make a suggestion. I you don't want to see gas drilling in your backyard, perhaps it is time to get a new backyard.

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Thursday, August 11, 2011

The Winner of the Republican Debate Is....

After having to stomach the two hours of debate tonight from Iowa, it appears that there was no clear winner from tonight's debate-- at least no one who was actually on the stage. Let's take a look at the candidates tonight:

1. Herman Cain: A strong debate performance, but overshadowed by Romney, Gingrich, and the Pawlenty-Bachmann feud. He can remain the race but needed a better response.

2. Rick Santorum: Forceful clarity when rebutting Ron Paul and on the budget. Wasted time and momentum talking about social issues that are not as much of a concern as the economy. Good debate, but is still behind in the polls.

3. Jon Huntsman: Are you kidding? Overall, a pretty piss-poor performance. He really doesn't seem to be much of anything or anyone.

4. Newt Gingrich: Considering I don't like Newt, he probably had the best overall performance of the folks on the stage. Slapped down Chris Wallace and actually talked about balancing the budget.

5. Ron Paul: Fucking crazy. Enough said.

6. Tim Pawlenty: Attempted a Hail Mary pass tonight-- made a good joke about coming to make dinner or mow a lawn but staked everything else on attacking Bachmann. He got her off her talking points and exposed some animosity, but he fizzled badly. Also avoided attacking Romney when given the chance. He might be out of the race.

7. Michele Bachmann: Came off as flaky and ineffective. She claimed to 'lead' the fight against the debt ceiling raising-- and as Governor Pawlenty pointed out, failed. Her 'leadership' on the debt ceiling led 20 House members on the GOP side and failed in her task of not raising it. Pawlenty opened a wound that Perry may use against her.

8. Mitt Romney: Didn't say much and was still smarmy and scripted. Still, no major gaffes, and was not attacked much. Of the candidates on the stage-- Romney came out best, but did not gain much.

Overall, the debate was almost a bit of a farce. A fair amount of infighting and not much actually discussed on policy, similar to the 2007 Democratic debates that did not even vet Barack Obama.

So the winner of tonight's debate:

Rick Perry

The debate opened a major gap that none of the candidates can fill. He would fill in the religiousity of Bachmann, the foreign policy of Santorum, the experience of Pawlenty, and the economic experience of Romney.
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Republican Debate Live Video Streaming

We also have a liveblog here.

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Republican Debate Liveblog

9:03pm: The debate is getting under way. First up, Michele Bachmann. She promises to turn the economy around in three months if elected. She says the US should not have increased the debt ceiling. She said that she led the movement that included Democrats and libertarians. She says of the President: "You are finished in 2012. You will be a one-term president." to applause.

Mitt Romney is next, saying that Obama's policies have not created jobs. He says seven things can fix the economy. One is that regulations should not be burdensome. Another is energy security. Another trade policy. Last is a balanced budget.

9:05pm: Baier is pressing Romney on the debt ceiling. Romney said that 37% of the economy is made up of the government, up from 27% under the Kennedy Administration. He agrees with cut, cap, and balance. Romney says that he was against the debt ceiling, as planned.

9:08pm: Ron Paul up now, saying that we need to "restore sound money."

9:10pm: Cain calls for tax rates to stay the same. "I represent growth and it represents the private sector putting gas in the tank" Cain said. He also wants the economy growing in 90 days.

9:14: Going to listen from now on. If one of my co-bloggers wants to pick up, they're welcome.

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Obama's Crumbling Base

I came across two videos today that give me hope that President Obama will not hold the presidency in 2012.

Felonious Munk takes the President's leadership to task while articulating in his own special way that the populace is hurting and looking for some action. Evidently Mr. Munk and Mr. Santelli have quite a bit in common. Language warning here so not really safe for work and would wait until the kids go to bed.

The other video comes courtesy of The Black Conservative Coalition. Not long ago, former NAACP President C.L. Bryant spoke at a meeting of the Milwaukee Black Conservative People. Yes there is such a group whose very existence gives me hope that the long national nightmare will be over in 2012.

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Flashback: Jay Carney Mocks President Bush for Going on Vacation

I know, I know, liberals have no shame, but still...

You know that President Obama takes a lot of vacations. I know that President Obama takes a lot of vacations. Everyone knows. Back in the day, way back in 2001, a young man named Jay Carney mocked President Bush for taking one of his own, unaware that he would one day be a brain-dead shill of one Barack Obama:
The imagemakers who advise George W. Bush got what they wanted this week: a photograph, taken by the Associated Press and published in seemingly every newspaper in the country, of the President lifting a telephone pole as he "helped maintain" a nature trail in Colorado's Rocky Mountain National Park.

Back in July, when they were planning what the President should do during his monthlong vacation (as part of their effort to convince the public that he wasn't actually on vacation in the generally accepted sense of what the word means — i.e., having fun and not working), the imagemakers hit upon a clever idea. Every week, they decided, they would send the President somewhere outside Texas for a day or a day and a half to hold an event of some kind in which he would mix with "real Americans."

The events would have little in common, except for the fact that they would be held far from Washington in the middle of August. But to tie them together and to make it seem as though the President were engaged in some concentrated activity of presidential purpose, they would name the series of trips — together with his downtime at his ranch in Crawford, Texas — the Home to the Heartland tour.

During his first week of vacation, Bush ventured all the way to Waco — about 25 minutes from Crawford — to "help build" a house with Habitat for Humanity. Though Bush spent just about 15 minutes helping, the print media dutifully reported his activity. More important, of course, was the fact that the images of Bush doing a good deed were carried across the nation on television and in photographs...

Now, I'm not going to feign shock by the fact that Bush is using photo ops in an attempt — some might say a cynical attempt — to influence public opinion. It would be news if he weren't doing that. But it is worth noting that in the same week that Bush ventured to a pristine piece of the country to help maintain a nature trail and tout the money he put in his budget to help restore national parks, the news out of Washington carried a very different message. The Washington Post ran an article about the Bush Administration's likely plan to rescind a Clinton-era Executive Order that forbids road building (and therefore logging) on 60 million acres of public land. And several newspapers published pieces about the Environmental Protection Agency's pending decision on whether to loosen the rules governing toxic emissions from factories, a move heavily favored, not surprisingly, by the industries that would be affected.

The President's most glaring weakness is the public's perception that he is pro-business and anti-environment. Given the high marks he's getting for his overall job performance and deft handling of the stem-cell-research question, some might even say it's his only weakness. The question now is whether a few photo ops will fix the problem — or just make it worse.
Hypocrite Extraordinaire

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Yes, the U.S. Government is severely understaffed as all of its necessary agencies, bureaus, and other entities toil diligently to carry out their essential missions. That may be why a heroic Fish and Wildlife Service agent had to enlist the support of a Virginia State Trooper to confront two dangerous lawbreakers (one of them eleven years old) in Fredericksburg, Va. The offense? The eleven year old had rescued a baby woodpecker from being eaten by a cat.

The agent was working undercover (in plain clothes) at a local Lowe's store; either that or she was shopping, but due to the vital nature of her duties, is considered on-the-job 24 hours a day. After whipping out her badge and confronting the lawbreaker and her mother, the agent went to her office and engineered a federal court summons for an offense carrying a $500 fine and up to one year in jail. Presumably after consulting with other essential employees, likely including one or more attorneys, it was determined that the mother, rather than the eleven-year old, should be charged. The paperwork took a mere two weeks, after which the agent arranged for state trooper backup, went to the evildoers’ home, and served the summons.

This incident brings to mind the recent Department of Education swat team raid. Or any number of similar absurdities (TSA “special scrutiny” for 6-month old babies; a 93-year old terminal cancer patient forced to remove her diaper). The FBI, which cannot discern that Major Nidal Hasan is a terrorist, has sufficient resources that it can be tasked as a private collection agency for the very wealthy (and politically connected) music and movie industries, tracking down and arresting college students for downloading songs or movies in their dorm rooms. Such matters can be dismissed as “anecdotal” unless, as seems to be the case, they are reported on almost a daily basis.

Which brings us to the recent “debt negotiations.” Of course not a single federal agency, bureau, or other entity could be considered for elimination. In fact, not a single employee of any one of these agencies could be considered for furlough. We simply must borrow another 2.4 Trillion Dollars to continue funding all the necessary services that the American people demand.

This country is in serious trouble, and it has never been more true that, as Ronald Reagan used to say, “Government is not the solution to our problems; government is the problem.” I am an attorney from Missouri. I cringe every day at the seeming helplessness of the real American people to resist the “transformation” that is being forced upon us by an extremely radical minority. Pundit Press and its fine staff have graciously invited me to write for them, and I hope that by doing so I can, in some small way, help to become part of the solution. God bless America.

MO Atty

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The Rick Perry Interview Video

Texas Governor Rick Perry gave an interview with Mark Halperin of Time magazine. He is now running for President. The video is below:

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Vote: If You Had One Word to Describe President Obama, What Would it Be?

Over two and a half years into his Presidency, there are certainly a myriad of opinions that people have about Barack Obama.  To some he is a socialist hell bent on changing our nation from the inside out.  To others, he is the perfect leader, the President they had always wanted.  Others believe that he is a massive disappointment.

The thing is, depending on your opinion, there are a hundred words that could describe Mr. Obama.  To a conservative he is a hack, a loser, naive, and occasionally childish.  To many liberals he is powerful and decisive, intelligent and refined.  This poll, however, is looking for the best word that describes him.  If it came down to one word to define our 44th President, what would it be?

Vote below, and if you have a different word, please comment!

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Explosive- Ex-National Security Aide Richard Clarke: CIA Tried to Recruit 9/11 Perpetrators to Act as Double Agents, Then Covered it Up

Utterly unproven but completely provocative:
With the 10th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks only a month away, former CIA Director George Tenet and two former top aides are fighting back hard against allegations that they engaged in a massive cover-up in 2000 and 2001 to hide intelligence from the White House and the FBI that might have prevented the attacks.

The source of the explosive, unproved allegations is a man who once considered Tenet a close friend: former White House counterterrorism czar Richard Clarke, who makes the charges against Tenet and the CIA in an interview for a radio documentary timed to the 10th anniversary next month. Portions of the Clarke interview were made available to The Daily Beast by the producers of the documentary.

In the interview for the documentary, Clarke offers an incendiary theory that, if true, would rewrite the history of the 9/11 attacks, suggesting that the CIA intentionally withheld information from the White House and FBI in 2000 and 2001 that two Saudi-born terrorists were on U.S. soil – terrorists who went on to become suicide hijackers on 9/11.

Clarke speculates – and readily admits he cannot prove -- that the CIA withheld the information because the agency had been trying to recruit the terrorists, while they were living in southern California under their own names, to work as CIA agents inside Al Qaeda. After the recruitment effort went sour, senior CIA officers continued to withhold the information from the White House for fear they would be accused of “malfeasance and misfeasance,” Clarke suggests.

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Rep. Peter King Asks For Probe Into White House’s Role in Bin Laden Movie

Ra! Ra! film to be investigated?:
House Homeland Security Committee Chairman Peter King (R-N.Y.) on Wednesday demanded an investigation into a report that the White House is cooperating with a film on the mission to kill Osama bin Laden.

In a letter to the Defense Department and the CIA, King asked for a probe and classified briefing about any cooperation or consultation between the agencies and the producers of the film, set to be directed by Kathryn Bigelow, who in 2008 made “The Hurt Locker,” which won six Oscars, including best picture and best director.

“The administration’s first duty in declassifying material is to provide full reporting to Congress and the American people, in an effort to build public trust through transparency of government,” King wrote. “In contrast, this alleged collaboration belies a desire of transparency in favor of a cinematographic view of history.”

White House spokesman Jay Carney called the claims “ridiculous” during his daily press briefing.

Carney said the White House is offering the same level of cooperation to the filmmakers as it does with other journalists.

“We don’t discuss classified information,” he said.
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Karzai Wont Seek Third Term

Hamid Karzai, who has served as President of Afghanistan since early 2005, announced earlier today that he will not seek a third five year term in office in accordance with the young constitution's term limits on presidential service.

The Afghan President has served his country well since taking office several years ago, and has remained an ally of the United States, even with the death of his close brother-in-law last month. He has staunchly fought the al-Qaida and Taliban terror networks side-by-side with NATO and U.S. forces.

I don't know who will run to succeed Mr. Karzai in the 2014 election, but I hope they will be as determined to eliminate the jihadist elements as he has been.

What say you?

History Doesn’t Repeat it Rhymes Again

When I was studying to become a Historian I ran afoul of the professors tasked with helping me arrive at my destination.  When you study for advanced degrees in History you are required to choose an area of specialization and if you are particularly ambitious you might choose two separate areas.  Being an over achiever who has always been blessed with an inquiring mind I choose four and proceeded to complete the necessary class work for all of them.  Near the end of my career as a professional History student the professor in charge of the program told me I had to pick one field that would be my over arching area of study.
By this time I was writing opinion columns for the school newspaper much along the lines of the weekly columns I churn out today.  In each article I would examine an event or situation from current events and place it in a historical and constitutional context.  I called these articles the “History of the Future” which is what current events are.  So, when asked to declare a comprehensive Historical Interest I told my professor that I had decided to specialize in the History of the Future, and if he was interested he could ask me in ten minutes and I would tell him what his last statement meant.  He didn’t think it was nearly as clever as I did. 
Although it was unknown to me at the time my professor was well aware of my writing and was therefore not dazzled by my answer.  He was bemused, he was shocked, and he was angered.  He thought I was irreverent in my approach to History and mocking in my tone toward Historians.   Then, as now, I believed that if History doesn’t help us to live in the present it is merely curiosity or voyeurism that compels us to gaze upon the past.  I believe I might have said that or its equivalent along the way, and this had not earned me the heartfelt appreciation of those whom I hoped to one day call my peers.
Once I successfully navigated the shoals and received my professional Historian’s badge I continued seeing History as a useful lens for the interpretation of current events presented in my weekly articles which I continue to call the History of the Future.  However, as I continue to relate the present to the past in an attempt to discern the future I have noted my divergence from common knowledge and accepted wisdom when it comes to the relation of knowledge of History to actions in the present. 
Everyone knows and many people say, “Those who fail to learn from History are doomed to repeat it.”  I believe that a historical context is necessary for any understanding of the present.  I also believe that a lack of historical context is one of the major contributing factors to the current state of affairs in America.  I do not however believe that historical events repeat.  Yes one war seems to inevitably follow another, but they are always different wars.  World War Two followed World War One and in many ways completed one war in two acts but it was a war as different in strategy as it was in tactics.  They were two different wars.  Just as the current Great Recession follows the Great Depression and although they bear many similar aspects such as government complicity in their depth and duration they are most decidedly two separate catastrophes.
All of which leads me to my heretical belief that History doesn’t repeat it rhymes.  Take for instance the current spate of sweetheart deals and cronyism that has led us down the road to the crash of 2008, the downgrade of 2011, and the ongoing inflation default as we attempt to print our way to solvency.  Although this is unprecedented in size and scope, though it is the first economic crisis that threatens to cause America to spiral down from the first rank of nations, this is not the first time craven politicians and their crony capitalist supporters have sought to turn the public treasury into a personal ATM.
In 1863 the principle stockholders and executive officers of the Union Pacific Railroad Company launched a new venture Crédit Mobilier of America. The venture also had the support and protection of high level political leaders.   This construction company officially sought to build and maintain the first railroad to span the continent. Unofficially the company looted the federal treasury of as much money as it could while doing as little actual construction as possible.  The venture made enormous profits for some before causing a panic that ruined the fortunes of many innocent people resulting in a loss of faith in the practices of both business and government..
Crédit Mobilier was initially founded by Thomas C. Durant who was the vice president of Union Pacific.  Within a short time actual control of the company was assumed by two well connected brothers from Massachusetts: Congressman Oakes Ames and his brother, Oliver. 
Here’s how the scheme worked:  The men who owned Crédit Mobilier controlled the Union Pacific Railroad which was at the time racing the Central Pacific Railroad to meet in the middle of the country and unite a nation mired deep in the Civil War.  These men used their positions at the railroad to award no-bid contracts to Crédit Mobilier to complete the construction.  They awarded contracts totaling $94,000,000 when the actual costs were less than $54,000,000.
A large percentage of the money had been provided to the Union Pacific from Congress in the form of low interest loans and enormous land grants.  As the sums involved became larger and the Railroad plunged into unsustainable debt Congressman Ames sought to avoid oversight by selling stock to leading politicians for prices well below their perceived value.  Like all pyramid schemes this one eventually ran out of enough new investors to keep the perpetual motion going.  And as in all pyramid schemes first ones in and first ones out made fortunes while last ones in and last ones out lost their shirts.
In 1872 public indignation and economic ruin finally moved Congress to investigate.  The resulting scandal ruined the reputations of numerous high officials including the Vice President, leading Senators, and Congressman.  The crony capitalists were also exposed as grafters, and the first in a long line of Robber Baron looters who have used political connection and government preference to walk off with the public’s money.  After a thorough investigation which left not one stone unturned although the principle actors were revealed no politician was thrown out of office, no one was ever prosecuted, and those who built the pyramid got to keep the cash.  In 1897, the Union Pacific was completely reorganized and the present Union Pacific has no relationship to a scandal that rocked the nation and impacted millions.
Today crony capitalists and the politicians who advance and protect them have brought our economy to the brink of disaster.  Once again after brutal investigations and maximum exposure no one has been expelled from the corridors of power and no one has been prosecuted.  These same politicians who have spent the income of unborn generations are walking away with pensions and benefits, their crony capitalist pals are laughing all the way to the bank, and the citizens are left holding the bag.  Day by day, hour by hour, minute by minute the headlines continue to reinforce my belief that History doesn’t repeat it rhymes.
Dr. Owens teaches History, Political Science, and Religion for Southside Virginia Community College.  He is the author of the History of the Future @ http://drrobertowens.com View the trailer for Dr. Owens’ latest book @ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_ypkoS0gGn8 © 2011 Robert R. Owens drrobertowens@hotmail.com  Follow Dr. Robert Owens on Facebook or Twitter @ Drrobertowens.

New Pawlenty Ad Out: Experience Matters

Below is a pretty good ad out from former Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty, 'Experience Matters':

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Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Guess What: Joe Wilson was Right

No big shock here:
Obamacare-Funded Health Centers for 'Migrants' Won't Check Immigration Status

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced on Tuesday that it has awarded $28.8 million to 67 community health centers with funds from the Obamacare health reform law.

Of that $28.8 million, "approximately $8.5 million will be used by 25 New Access Point awardees to target services to migrant and seasonal farm workers," Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) Spokeswoman Judy Andrews told CNSNews.com. HRSA is a part of HHS.

Andrews said that grant recipients will not check the immigration status of people seeking services.

“Health centers do not, as a matter of routine practice, ask about or collect data on citizenship or other matters not related to the treatment needs of the patients seeking health services at the center,” Andrews said.

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Exclusive: Daily Kos Sends Out Mass-Email: "We lost. They won."

We have received a tip, accompanied by a mass-email that was sent by Chris Bowers, the "Campaign Director" of Daily Kos.  It was entitled "Next" and detailed the Wisconsin recall election that took place yesterday.

You might expect Kos to blindly pump up their liberal readers.  Indeed, in the moderately lengthy email there was a list of "positives" that was included concerning their loses Tuesday (click for better quality):
But here's the thing: even these guys realized the massive defeat handed to them yesterday.  It was no more evident than their very first bullet under "Negative:"
Ouch, that has really got to sting.  Another "negative" that practically screams that Democrats should just give up:
Here's the complete list:
More, they didn't even use the old liberal stand-by of screaming "fraaaaaaaaaaud!"  They admitted that they simply failed.  It's shockingly...sane, even though why  and what they did doesn't make any sense.  I'll leave you with another quote from the email:

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DOW Closes Down More than 500 Points; Wipes Out Yesterday's Gain, Pushes DOW Well Below 11,000

It seems that yesterday was a false rebound.  I hate to say this, but start getting nervous about a second recession:
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Republicans Within Striking Distance of Weiner's Seat

Dun, dun, duuun:
Democrat David Weprin holds a scant, six-point lead over Republican Bob Turner in a Sept. 13 special election to replace disgraced former Rep. Anthony Weiner, D-N.Y., according to a new Siena Research Institute poll released Wednesday.

Weprin leads Turner among likely voters, 48 percent to 42 percent. Nine percent are undecided.

Turner, a businessman who lost to Weiner in the 2010 general election in the district, has a six-point lead in the borough of Brooklyn, where roughly 30 percent of the district's voters reside. But Weprin, a state assemblyman, holds a ten-point lead in Queens, home to seven-in-ten voters. Weprin's father, Saul, represented Queens in the Assembly for more than 30 years, rising to the position of speaker before his passing in 1994.

Voters' opinions are surprisingly hardened with a month to go until the election. Just 15 percent of likely voters say they may change their minds between now and Election Day. That's split roughly evenly between Weprin's (17 percent) and Turner's (13 percent) supporters.

Turner has found an important and unlikely backer in the form of former New York Mayor Ed Koch. Koch was known for asking New Yorkers "How am I doing?" during his three terms as the city's Democratic mayor. More than 20 years after he left Gracie Mansion, the voters of the Ninth Congressional District have an overwhelmingly positive answer for Koch: A remarkable 69 percent of likely voters have a favorable opinion of him, while just 23 percent have an unfavorable opinion.
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Video: The Hammer on Obama's Role in Stock Prices


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DOW Down 400+; Wipes out Yesterday's Gains

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When "Wisconsin Recall Fraud" Searched in Twitter, Ed Schultz, NPR Top List of 'Related'

Apparently twitter knows better than thousands of voters in Wisconsin:
For a better look:
That's Ed Schultz, NPR, and the New York Times.  Twitter hit the fraud jackpot.

How could anyone possibly think a person that says this is a fraud?!:

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Finally: White House to Call on Assad to Step Down

It's about bloody time:
The Obama administration is planning to explicitly call for Syrian President Bashar Assad to step down in coming days, two administration officials told FoxNews.

The State Department signaled for the first time that American efforts to engage the Syrian government are finally over. The White House is expected to lay out the tougher line by the end of this week, possibly on Thursday.

The administration will first consult with the United Nations Security Council as the Treasury Department prepares a new set of sanctions aimed at Assad's family and his government, the officials told FoxNews.

The unilateral U.S. sanctions being prepared within the Treasury Department will be important to pay attention to, the officials said.

The calls for Assad's resignation coincide with the rise in international pressure for his administration to end the brutal crackdown on civilian protestors. Rights groups say approximately 1,700 people have been killed since March. An aggressive new military offensive that began with the Muslim holy month of Ramadan a week ago has already killed several hundred.
Genocidal Maniac
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Wednesday Bush-a-thon

 Consider this an open thread.

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Democrats Charge Wisconsin Election Fraud

Despite the fact that Democrats have just lost their high-profile attempt to take over the Wisconsin state senate, they are now looking for other avenues.

One of them is accusing the Republicans of voter fraud despite the clear victories in the race. They're attempting to use a mistake (an incompetent one, at that, but still a mistake) by the county clerk of one county in the state supreme court case, as a hammer to claim election fraud:

With 10 of 11 Waukesha County wards still out -- including all of those in Menomonee Falls -- party spokesman Graeme Zielinski said, "We believe the election in this contest has been tampered with by Waukesha County Clerk Kathy Nickolaus.

"She’s sitting on votes. We believe that right now, there are severe irregularities in Waukesha County once again. We believe the very fate of the Wisconsin Senate hangs in the balance and is in the hands of a woman who has already shown extreme incompetence.”

“We believe there’s dirty tricks afoot.”

Too bad.

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Picture of the Day

This picture comes to us via the Wisconsin State Journal of a supporter of the recall efforts. The disappointment is clear, indeed.

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Wisconsin Democrats Fail in State Senate Putsch Attempt

Democrats in Wisconsin have failed in an effort to take over the state senate. This comes as the party and unions spent millions to take at least three of six seats up for recall election. Despite a massive public relations blitz, the Democrats only came away with one firm victory and one within the margin of error.

For the unions and the Democrats, this is a heavy blow. To make matters worse for them, next week is an election in which two Democratic senators may be thrown out in recall elections.

Watching Ed Schultz's 10pm EST show (for schadenfreude purposes) you could see the disappointment and/or denial from the crowd assembled in Madison.

The Democrats dialed up the rhetoric during the campaign:

During the campaign, Moore, 37, of River Falls accused Harsdorf, 55, of betraying working families, public employees, students and seniors. Moore is an English teacher at Ellsworth High School and a member of the Wisconsin Education Association Council, the state's largest teachers union.

And spun as much as they could from their meager victories:

"The people of the 32nd Senate District sent Gov. Walker and his legislative Republicans rubber-stamps a clear message today: they've had enough of the GOP's extreme agenda that favors wealthy special interests and large out-of-state corporations at the expense of Wisconsin's working, middle class families," read a statement Barca issued.

So a memo to the SEIU, the Wisconsin teachers unions, the Democratic Party of the state, and whiny college students: you lost. Again.

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Tuesday, August 09, 2011

Live Wisconsin Election Coverage

Update, 8:01am (8/10/11)-
Darling (R) defeats Pasch (D) 39,471-34,096.

Update, 1:16am (8/10/11)-
The only race left is Darling v. Pasch. In case you missed any numbers, here are the final totals in the other five (all with 100% in):

Cowles (R) defeats Nusbaum (D) 27,543-18,039.
Harsdorf (R) defeats Moore (D) 37,099-27,250.
Olsen (R) defeats Clark (D) 26,554-24,365.
King (D) defeats Hopper (R) 28,188-26,937.
Shilling (D) defeats Kapanke (R) 33,192-26,724.

Update, 1:14am (8/10/11)-
Shilling (D) leading Kapanke (R) 33,192-26,937. 100% in
Darling (R) leading Pasch (D) 34,840-29,821.

Update, 12:38am (8/10/11)-
Cowles (R) leading Nusbaum (D) 27,543-18,039. 100% in
Darling (R) leading Pasch (D) 32,569-28,741.

Update, 12:27am (8/10/11)-
Cowles (R) leading Nusbaum (D) 26,585-17,463.
Shilling (D) leading Kapanke (R) 25,539-20,122.

Update, 12:16am (8/10/11)
Darling (R) leading Pasch (D) 31,404-28,296.

Update, 12:13am (8/10/11)- From now on, I will only be updating numbers that actually change.

Update, 12:11am (8/10/11)-
Cowles (R) leading Nusbaum (D) 24,653-17,463.
Darling (R) leading Pasch (D) 30,394-27,776.
Harsdorf (R) leading Moore (D) 37,099-27,250. 100% in
Olsen (R) leading Clark (D) 26,554-24,365. 100% in
King (D) leading Hopper (R) 28,188-26,937. 100% in
Shilling (D) leading Kapanke (R) 25,149-19,767.

Update, 12:08am (8/10/11)-
Cowles (R) leading Nusbaum (D) 24,653-17,463.
Pasch (D) leading Darling (R) 23,804-22,693.
Harsdorf (R) leading Moore (D) 37,099-27,250. 100% in
Olsen (R) leading Clark (D) 26,554-24,365. 100% in
King (D) leading Hopper (R) 28,188-26,937. 100% in
Shilling (D) leading Kapanke (R) 25,149-19,767.

Update, 12:01am (8/10/11)-
Cowles (R) leading Nusbaum (D) 24,653-17,463.
Pasch (D) leading Darling (R) 23,804-22,693.
Harsdorf (R) leading Moore (D) 35,509-26,198.
Olsen (R) leading Clark (D) 26,554-24,365. 100% in
King (D) leading Hopper (R) 28,188-26,937. 100% in
Shilling (D) leading Kapanke (R) 25,149-19,767.

Update, 11:53pm-
Cowles (R) leading Nusbaum (D) 23,708-16,835.
Pasch (D) leading Darling (R) 23,804-22,693.
Harsdorf (R) leading Moore (D) 35,509-26,198.
Olsen (R) leading Clark (D) 26,554-24,365. 100% in
King (D) leading Hopper (R) 28,188-26,937.
Shilling (D) leading Kapanke (R) 23,112-18,305.

Update, 11:47pm-
Cowles (R) leading Nusbaum (D) 23,708-16,835.
Pasch (D) leading Darling (R) 23,451-21,713.
Harsdorf (R) leading Moore (D) 35,509-26,198.
Olsen (R) leading Clark (D) 26,554-24,365. 100% in
King (D) leading Hopper (R) 28,188-26,937.
Shilling (D) leading Kapanke (R) 23,112-18,305.

Update, 11:39pm-
Cowles (R) leading Nusbaum (D) 23,708-16,835.
Pasch (D) leading Darling (R) 23,451-21,713.
Harsdorf (R) leading Moore (D) 35,509-26,198.
Olsen (R) leading Clark (D) 26,554-24,365. 100% in
King (D) leading Hopper (R) 27,123-25,951.
Shilling (D) leading Kapanke (R) 23,112-18,305.

Update, 11:35pm-
Cowles (R) leading Nusbaum (D) 23,708-16,835.
Pasch (D) leading Darling (R) 20,562-19,675.
Harsdorf (R) leading Moore (D) 35,509-26,198.
Olsen (R) leading Clark (D) 26,554-24,365. 100% in
King (D) leading Hopper (R) 27,123-25,951.
Shilling (D) leading Kapanke (R) 21,383-17,507.

Update, 11:32pm-
Cowles (R) leading Nusbaum (D) 23,708-16,835.
Pasch (D) leading Darling (R) 20,562-19,675.
Harsdorf (R) leading Moore (D) 35,509-26,198.
Olsen (R) leading Clark (D) 26,554-24,365. 100% in
King (D) leading Hopper (R) 24,458-24,321.
Shilling (D) leading Kapanke (R) 21,383-17,507.

Update, 11:30pm- Updates are slowing down slightly because of the number of precincts that have already reported

Update, 11:24pm-
Cowles (R) leading Nusbaum (D) 23,708-16,835.
Pasch (D) leading Darling (R) 20,562-19,675.
Harsdorf (R) leading Moore (D) 35,509-26,198.
Olsen (R) leading Clark (D) 26,554-24,365. 100% in
King (D) leading Hopper (R) 24,458-24,321.
Shilling (D) leading Kapanke (R) 19,928-16,537.

Update, 11:19pm-
Cowles (R) leading Nusbaum (D) 23,615-16,771.
Pasch (D) leading Darling (R) 20,562-19,675.
Harsdorf (R) leading Moore (D) 34,908-25,794.
Olsen (R) leading Clark (D) 26,554-24,365.
King (D) leading Hopper (R) 24,458-24,321.
Shilling (D) leading Kapanke (R) 19,928-16,537.

Update, 11:16pm-
Cowles (R) leading Nusbaum (D) 23,615-16,771.
Pasch (D) leading Darling (R) 18,033-13,112.
Harsdorf (R) leading Moore (D) 34,908-25,794.
Olsen (R) leading Clark (D) 26,554-24,365.
King (D) leading Hopper (R) 24,458-24,321.
Shilling (D) leading Kapanke (R) 19,928-16,537. With 98 out of 119 precincts reporting, Pundit Press calls this race for Shilling (D)

Update, 11:11pm-
Cowles (R) leading Nusbaum (D) 23,615-16,771.
Pasch (D) leading Darling (R) 12,064-9,528.
Harsdorf (R) leading Moore (D) 33,392-23,927.
Olsen (R) leading Clark (D) 25,358-22,326.
King (D) leading Hopper (R) 24,458-24,321.
Shilling (D) leading Kapanke (R) 19,928-16,537.

Update, 11:05pm-
Cowles (R) leading Nusbaum (D) 23,615-16,771.
Pasch (D) leading Darling (R) 12,064-9,528.
Harsdorf (R) leading Moore (D) 27,202-20,082.
Olsen (R) leading Clark (D) 24,321-20,690.
Hopper (R) leading King (D) 23,550-23,016.
Shilling (D) leading Kapanke (R) 19,399-16,298.

Update, 10:58pm-
Cowles (R) leading Nusbaum (D) 23,375-16,610.
Pasch (D) leading Darling (R) 12,032-9,447.
Harsdorf (R) leading Moore (D) 25,713-18,425.
Olsen (R) leading Clark (D) 24,321-20,690.
Hopper (R) leading King (D) 22,788-22,212.
Shilling (D) leading Kapanke (R) 19,399-16,298.

Update, 10:52pm-
Cowles (R) leading Nusbaum (D) 22,020-15,963.
Pasch (D) leading Darling (R) 12,032-9,447.
Harsdorf (R) leading Moore (D) 25,713-18,425.
Olsen (R) leading Clark (D) 23,868-19,995. With 120 out of 126 precincts reporting, Pundit Press calls this race for Olsen (R)
King (D) leading Hopper (R) 8,508-7,890.
Shilling (D) leading Kapanke (R) 13,762-11,272.

Update, 10:47pm-
Cowles (R) leading Nusbaum (D) 21,124-15,341.
Pasch (D) leading Darling (R) 12,032-9,447.
Harsdorf (R) leading Moore (D) 25,713-18,425.
Olsen (R) leading Clark (D) 23,049-19,285.
King (D) leading Hopper (R) 8,508-7,890.
Shilling (D) leading Kapanke (R) 12,450-10,636.

Update, 10:43pm-
Cowles (R) leading Nusbaum (D) 19,723-14,119.
Pasch (D) leading Darling (R) 10,691-8,424.
Harsdorf (R) leading Moore (D) 23,842-17,070.
Olsen (R) leading Clark (D) 23,049-19,285.
King (D) leading Hopper (R) 7,464-7,368.
Shilling (D) leading Kapanke (R) 11,830-10,238.

Update, 10:39pm-
Cowles (R) leading Nusbaum (D) 19,723-14,119.
Pasch (D) leading Darling (R) 8,848-6,741.
Harsdorf (R) leading Moore (D) 23,842-17,070.
Olsen (R) leading Clark (D) 17,504-15,155.
King (D) leading Hopper (R) 7,464-7,368.
Shilling (D) leading Kapanke (R) 11,353-9,968.

Update, 10:36pm-
Cowles (R) leading Nusbaum (D) 18,857-13,357.
Pasch (D) leading Darling (R) 8,848-6,741.
Harsdorf (R) leading Moore (D) 23,842-17,070.
Olsen (R) leading Clark (D) 17,504-15,155.
King (D) leading Hopper (R) 7,464-7,368.
Shilling (D) leading Kapanke (R) 11,353-9,968.

Update, 10:30pm-
Cowles (R) leading Nusbaum (D) 18,718-13,292.
Pasch (D) leading Darling (R) 8,848-6,741.
Harsdorf (R) leading Moore (D) 23,670-16,949. With 85 out of 114 precincts reporting, Pundit Press calls this race for Harsdorf (R)
Olsen (R) leading Clark (D) 17,504-15,155.
Hopper (R) leading King (D) 5,794-5,229.
Shilling (D) leading Kapanke (R) 8,982-7,987.

Update, 10:22pm-
Cowles (R) leading Nusbaum (D) 18,718-13,292. With 73 out of 90 precincts reporting, Pundit Press calls this race for Cowles (R)
Pasch (D) leading Darling (R) 8,848-6,741.
Harsdorf (R) leading Moore (D) 19,572-13,921.
Olsen (R) leading Clark (D) 15,788-12,952.
Hopper (R) leading King (D) 5,794-5,229.
Shilling (D) leading Kapanke (R) 6,039-5,256.

Update, 10:14pm-
Cowles (R) leading Nusbaum (D) 16,672-11,815.
Darling (R) leading Pasch (D) 5,111-4,266.
Harsdorf (R) leading Moore (D) 18,822-13,401.
Olsen (R) leading Clark (D) 10,974-9,058.
Hopper (R) leading King (D) 5,794-5,229.
Shilling (D) leading Kapanke (R) 2,641-2,556.

Update, 10:08pm-
Cowles (R) leading Nusbaum (D) 12,832-9,186.
Darling (R) leading Pasch (D) 3,183-1,320.
Harsdorf (R) leading Moore (D) 16,753-12,056.
Olsen (R) leading Clark (D) 10,088-8,218.
Hopper (R) leading King (D) 3,680-3,395.
Shilling (D) leading Kapanke (R) 2,541-2,468.

Update, 10:00pm-
Cowles (R) leading Nusbaum (D) 10,777-8,029.
Darling (R) leading Pasch (D) 2,786-1,120.
Harsdorf (R) leading Moore (D) 15,915-11,477.
Olsen (R) leading Clark (D) 7,576-6,208.
Hopper (R) leading King (D) 3,025-2,576.
Shilling (D) leading Kapanke (R) 2,541-2,468.

Update, 9:49pm-
Cowles (R) leading Nusbaum (D) 4,206-2,764.
Darling (R) leading Pasch (D) 2,786-1,120.
Harsdorf (R) leading Moore (D) 12,525-8,643.
Olsen (R) leading Clark (D) 5,102-4,820.
Hopper (R) leading King (D) 3,025-2,576.
Shilling (D) leading Kapanke (R) 2,226-2,213.

Update, 9:40pm-
Cowles (R) leading Nusbaum (D) 1,350-845.
Darling (R) leading Pasch (D) 942-585.
Harsdorf (R) leading Moore (D) 2,631-2,015.
Olsen (R) leading Clark (D) 2,974-2,078.
Hopper (R) leading King (D) 1,965-1,671.
Shilling (D) leading Kapanke (R) 487-445.

Cowles (R) leading Nusbaum (D) 342-228.
Darling (R) leading Pasch (D) 942-585.
Clark (D) leads Olsen (R) 152-140.

Update-  The first votes are in.  Republican Robert Cowles has jumped to an early lead with 33 votes to Democrat Nancy Nusbaum's 2.  That's in District 2.

~Original Article Below~

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