Sunday, February 17, 2008
As many of you know, I am a dentist practicing in the South Jordan, Utah area. I have been helping people achieve oral health now for the past four years and will soon be opening my own office.
It has been my observation that there are two types of patients:
First, there are the patients who come in regularly for their semiannual exams and allow me to solve their problems while they are small and relatively inexpensive. My radiography and training allow me to detect and cure decay before the patient may even notice that there is a problem. By investing in dental care at regular intervals, these patients will spend far less money for their dental care than those who wait for the big problems to develop...which brings me to our second type of patient.
The other patients are those who wait to visit the dentist only when they themselves notice that they have a problem. In other words, they wait until they have pain, a tissue lesion, or have a hole in a tooth. In almost every case, when the patient themselves can diagnose their own problem, the solution is more expensive (most commonly a root canal and crown).
I think of Romney as a highly trained specialist when it comes to the strength of our nation. He has detected an assault on our families. He has warned us about the competition from foreign nations. He understands that our tax burden must be low and that government spending must be controlled at inflation less one percent. He knows that our military must be strengthened.
Why? Because he has spent his life in the economy. He has spent his life as a religious leader. Romney has also spent his life as a father of five sons. But more than any of these, Romney has spent his life fixing things.
So what kind of "patients" are Americans? Well, while Romney was still in the race, he had a consistent third of the Republican vote...not as good as McCain's thiry-four percent...but impressive nonetheless.
But, it is sad to report than the majority of Americans are the second kind of "patients" (speaking in terms of political choices). It would seem that most Americans did not believe Romney's warnings and would rather wait until they themselves can feel the problems. While there are some who would like to analyze how the Romney campaign could have done this or that differently, I place the responsibility of the election squarely on the shoulders of the voters. I think Romney's message was spot-on.
While I pray that it will not be the case, America may find herself in pain in the not too distant future. Depending on the choices that Americans make in their own families, as well as in the White House, there may come a time that our nation will know for themselves that there are problems to be solved. Unfortunatley, the problems will have grown and have become much more expensive than they would have been if we would have unleashed Romney in '08.
And like the people who wait until they are in pain to see their dentist, there are Americans who will wait until the strength of our nation is on the decline. And then, perhaps, Mitt Romney and conservatism will return when we need them most.
Thursday, February 14, 2008
Even with Romney's endorsement today, I am still finding myself uninspired by McCain.
Romney is making the argument that since we are at war, now is not the time to symbolically retreat by electing a democrat.
I reluctantly agree. But as a new business owner, I feel like I will have to brace myself for the next four years no matter who is elected. I am left with the question: Would a President McCain employ conservative policies to keep our economy strong enough that we can afford the war?
I think that we need to finish the war, but in order to do so, America needs to be unfettered by liberal policy. We can't afford a war, entitlements, and universal health care. To try to be all things to all people is the sure way to bankrupt America.
Does John McCain understand this? Is he ready to embrace conservative principles? Obama would cause the war to end by retreating, but McCain may also cause the war to end, not by withdrawing troops but by killing our economy.
Maybe Romney can explain this to us...
Tuesday, February 12, 2008
1. Iowa and New Hampshire should NOT lead the process. There is no reason – other than history and big egos – that these states should lead us off each season. I hate to say it, but Iowa caucus-goers are not the sharpest tools in the shed. We can do better. New Hampshire voters, on the other hand, are possibly more intellectual, but suffer from an irrational desire for rebellion. We don’t want party outsiders picking our nominee. It just doesn’t make any sense. It's hard to think of any two lead-off states worse than these.
2. New states should be allowed to lead the process each election cycle. This could be easily implemented by scheduling election days in advance and allowing interested states to apply to be in a lottery. The lottery would then determine the matchup between states and dates. One of the stipulations for admittance into the “early state lottery” would be that only registered Republicans can vote in the primary and the registration process would need to have been completed at least 6 months before the date of the primary.
3. Our caucusing should look more like the Democrats'. We had way too many candidates in the race for way too long. It’s healthy for the candidates to undergo a weeding-out process wherein supporters of candidates with less than 10 or 15 percent of the caucus vote are required to either leave or affiliate themselves with another candidate. This would have eliminated the likes of Tancredo, Hunter, and T. Thompson early on, thus allowing us to focus on realistic candidates in debates and future primaries and caucuses.
4. Plan a couple of “frontrunner debates” during the cycle. Agree upon specific criteria beforehand and at key dates during the process facilitate a debate between the TWO frontrunners. This could happen once after 3 or 4 states have voted and again right before a major event like super Tuesday.
5. Let’s agree to a window of time wherein no elected Republican officials are allowed to endorse candidates. This would force politicians to actually do some homework and risk some political capital if they are going to endorse a candidate (instead of just sticking their finger in the wind like the creepy Governor Crist). Perhaps “endorsement silence mode” could kick in two weeks before the first state votes and would end after 50 percent of states have voted. Of course everyone is entitled to free speech, but this could easily be established as a party norm.
6. Reward caucus and convention states with additional delegates. Throughout the primary season it has been evident – with the exception of Iowa – that caucusing produces superior results than primary voting. This should not be a surprise. The average primary voter may not spend more than a few minutes contemplating and making their vote. A caucus-goer, on the other hand, must make a diligent effort and substantial time commitment to their candidate. This results in a more robust and carefully contemplated choice.
So these are some of my ideas that I believe would contribute to a stronger nominee in 2012. The current process is bad, but it can be fixed. A staged primary is much better than a national primary. A national primary would be so expensive and the electorate so ignorant that only rich and famous people would have a chance. It would be a terrible idea.
So let's stick with a staged process, but mix up the order. Above all, let’s allow Republicans and conservatives to determine the nominee. The idea of “open primaries” early in the process is absurd. Also, let’s not be religious bigots. We need to make sure that a person of any faith – as long as he or she is a full-spectrum conservative – can win the Republican nomination.
What are your thoughts?
Saturday, February 9, 2008
Lewis makes a good argument that Mitt Romney's star is only beginning to shine. A virtual unknown only a year ago, Romney has now become a household name. This newfound popularity and the dedication Romney has shown to the GOP, including his gracious departure from the race, helps solidify his position as "the next in line." Similar to Ronald Reagan, who lost in 1976 only to win four years later, Mitt Romney is the GOP's de facto frontrunner heading into 2012 and even 2016.
Over the next few years expect to see Romney rise to influential leadership positions within the conservative movement. You will continue to hear his name until he becomes President Romney.
America, witness the birth of something extraordinary: ROMNEY REPUBLICANS. This new breed is only beginning to breathe, but it will become a powerful force in the not-so-distant future. Count on it!
To read the full text of Lewis' excellent article click here.
Thursday, February 7, 2008
Last year, CPAC gave me the sendoff I needed. I was in single digits in the polls and I was facing household Republican names.
As of today, more than 4 million people have given me their vote for president, less than Senator McCain’s 4.7 million, but quite a statement nonetheless. 11 states have given me their nod, compared to his 13. Of course, because size does matter, he’s doing quite a bit better with his number of delegates.
To all of you, thank you for caring enough about the future of America to show up, stand up and speak up for conservative principles.
As I said to you last year, conservative principles are needed now more than ever. We face a new generation of challenges, challenges which threaten our prosperity, our security and our future.
I am convinced that unless America changes course, we will become the France of the 21st century-still a great nation, but no longer the leader of the world, no longer the superpower. And to me, that is unthinkable.
Simon Peres, in a visit to Boston, was asked what he thought about the war in Iraq. First, he said, I must put something in context. America is unique in the history of the world. In the history of the world, whenever there has been conflict, the nation that wins takes land from the nation that loses.
One nation in history, and this during the last century, laid down hundreds of thousands of lives and took no land. No land from Germany, no land from Japan, no land from Korea. America is unique in the sacrifice it has made for liberty, for itself and for freedom loving people around the world. The best ally peace has ever known, and will ever know, is a strong America! And that is why we must rise to the occasion, as we have always done before, to confront the challenges ahead.
Perhaps the most fundamental of these is the attack on the American culture. Over the years, my business has taken me to many countries. I have been struck by the enormous differences in the wealth and well-being of people of different nations.
I have read a number of scholarly explanations for the disparities. I found the most convincing was that written by David Landes, a professor emeritus from Harvard University. I presume he’s a liberal–I guess that’s redundant. His work traces the coming and going of great civilizations throughout history.
After hundreds of pages of analysis, he concludes with this: If we learn anything from the history of economic development, it is that culture makes all the difference. Culture makes all the difference.
What is it about American culture that has led us to become the most powerful nation in the history of the world? We believe in hard work and education. We love opportunity: almost all of us are immigrants or descendants of immigrants who came here for opportunity-opportunity is in our DNA.
Americans love God, and those who don’t have faith, typically believe in something greater than themselves-a Purpose Driven Life. And we sacrifice everything we have, even our lives, for our families, our freedoms and our country. The values and beliefs of the free American people are the source of our nations strength and they always will be!
The threat to our culture comes from within. The 1960’s welfare programs created a culture of poverty. Some think we won that battle when we reformed welfare, but the liberals haven’t given up.
At every turn, they try to substitute government largesse for individual responsibility. They fight to strip work requirements from welfare, to put more people on Medicaid, and to remove more and more people from having to pay any income tax whatsoever. Dependency is death to initiative, risk-taking and opportunity. Dependency is a culture-killing drug-we have got to fight it like the poison it is!
The attack on faith and religion is no less relentless. And tolerance for pornography-even celebration of it-and sexual promiscuity, combined with the twisted incentives of government welfare programs have led to today’s grim realities: 68% of African American children are born out-of-wedlock, 45% of Hispanic children, and 25% of White children.
How much harder it is for these children to succeed in school-and in life. A nation built on the principles of the founding fathers cannot long stand when its children are raised without fathers in the home.
The development of a child is enhanced by having a mother and father. Such a family is the ideal for the future of the child and for the strength of a nation. I wonder how it is that unelected judges, like some in my state of Massachusetts, are so unaware of this reality, so oblivious to the millennia of recorded history. It is time for the people of America to fortify marriage through constitutional amendment, so that liberal judges cannot continue to attack it!
Europe is facing a demographic disaster. That is the inevitable product of weakened faith in the Creator, failed families, disrespect for the sanctity of human life and eroded morality. Some reason that culture is merely an accessory to Americas vitality; we know that it is the source of our strength. And we are not dissuaded by the snickers and knowing glances when we stand up for family values, and morality, and culture. We will always be honored to stand on principle and to stand for principle.
The attack on our culture is not our sole challenge. We face economic competition unlike anything we have ever known before.
China and Asia are emerging from centuries of poverty. Their people are plentiful, innovative, and ambitious. If we do not change course, Asia or China will pass us by as the economic superpower, just as we passed England and France during the last century. The prosperity and security of our children and grandchildren depend on us.
Our prosperity and security also depend on finally acting to become energy secure. Oil producing states like Russia and Venezuela, Saudi Arabia and Iran are siphoning over $400 billion per year from our economy–that’s almost what we spend annually for defense.
It is past time for us to invest in energy technology, nuclear power, clean coal, liquid coal, renewable sources and energy efficiency. America must never be held hostage by the likes of Putin, Chavez, and Ahmendinejad.
And our economy is also burdened by the inexorable ramping of government spending. Don’t focus on the pork alone-even though it is indeed irritating and shameful. Look at the entitlements.
They make up 60% of federal spending today. By the end of the next Presidents second term, they will total 70%. Any conservative plan for the future has to include entitlement reform that solves the problem, not just acknowledges it.
Most politicians don’t seem to understand the connection between our ability to compete and our national wealth, and the wealth of our families. They act as if money just happens–that it’s just there. But every dollar represents a good or service produced in the private sector. Depress the private sector and you depress the well-being of Americans.
That’s exactly what happens with high taxes, over-regulation, tort windfalls, mandates, and overfed, over-spending government. Did you see that today, government workers make more money than people who work in the private sector. Can you imagine what happens to an economy where the best opportunities are for bureaucrats?
It is high time to lower taxes, including corporate taxes, to take a weed-whacker to government regulations, to reform entitlements, and to stand up to the increasingly voracious appetite of the unions in our government!
And finally, let’s consider the greatest challenge facing America–and facing the entire civilized world: the threat of violent, radical Jihad.
In one wing of the world of Islam, there is a conviction that all governments should be destroyed and replaced by a religious caliphate. These Jihadists will battle any form of democracy–to them, democracy is blasphemous for it says that citizens, not God shape the law. They find the idea of human equality to be offensive. They hate everything we believe about freedom just as we hate everything they believe about radical Jihad.
To battle this threat, we have sent the most courageous and brave soldiers in the world. But their numbers have been depleted by the Clinton years when troops were reduced by 500,000, when 80 ships were retired from the Navy, and when our human intelligence was slashed by 25%.
We were told that we were getting a peace dividend. We got the dividend, but we didn’t get the peace. In the face of evil in radical Jihad and given the inevitable military ambitions of China, we must act to rebuild our military might. Raise military spending to 4% of our GDP, purchase the most modern armament, re-shape our fighting forces for the asymmetric demands we now face, and give the veterans the care they deserve!
Soon, the face of liberalism in America will have a new name. Whether it is Barack or Hillary, the result would be the same if they were to win the Presidency. The opponents of American culture would push the throttle, devising new justifications for judges to depart from the constitution.
Economic neophytes would layer heavier and heavier burdens on employers and families, slowing our economy and opening the way for foreign competition to further erode our lead.
Even though we face an uphill fight, I know that many in this room are fully behind my campaign. You are with me all the way to the convention. Fight on, just like Ronald Reagan did in 1976. But there is an important difference from 1976: today… we are a nation at war.
And Barack and Hillary have made their intentions clear regarding Iraq and the war on terror. They would retreat and declare defeat. And the consequence of that would be devastating. It would mean attacks on America, launched from safe havens that make Afghanistan under the Taliban look like childs’ play. About this, I have no doubt.
I disagree with Senator McCain on a number of issues, as you know. But I agree with him on doing whatever it takes to be successful in Iraq, on finding and executing Usama bin Laden, and on eliminating Al Qaeda and terror. If I fight on in my campaign, all the way to the convention, I would forestall the launch of a national campaign and make it more likely that Senator Clinton or Obama would win. And in this time of war, I simply cannot let my campaign, be a part of aiding a surrender to terror.
This is not an easy decision for me. I hate to lose. My family, my friends and our supporters… many of you right here in this room… have given a great deal to get me where I have a shot at becoming President. If this were only about me, I would go on. But I entered this race because I love America, and because I love America, I feel I must now stand aside, for our party and for our country.
I will continue to stand for conservative principles; I will fight alongside you for all the things we believe in. And one of those things is that we cannot allow the next President of the United States to retreat in the face evil extremism!!
It is the common task of each generation-and the burden of liberty-to preserve this country, expand its freedoms and renew its spirit so that its noble past is prologue to its glorious future.
To this task… accepting this burden… we are all dedicated, and I firmly believe, by the providence of the Almighty, that we will succeed beyond our fondest hope. America must remain, as it has always been, the hope of the earth.
Thank you, and God bless America.
Sometimes I have to try on an idea and let it sink in a little before I really know how to feel about it. I would like to take back my suggestion that Romney and McCain run together. That would be like Abraham Lincoln running as VP to Jimmy Carter.
Romney should see this thing through. He is new to the political scene and has finally gotten his name out there. While not likely, there could still be some unforeseen events that could propel Mitt to the nomination. What Romney needs to do is to wrap himself up in conservatism and work till our country comes to our senses. His election may be realized in '08 or 2012...but now is not the time for compromise...especially with such a traitor to the party like John McCain.
John McCain is not the man to lead the Republican party and I would be ashamed to have Mitt help him in that effort. Sorry about my moment of weakness that was on display yesterday. If it ends up being a choice between McCain and Obama or Hillary, I will vote for Bloomberg or Bart Simpson as a write-in. I will still vote so that I can choose the most conservative Senator and Judges...but for the choice of president, McCain will not get my vote just because he has an R after his name.
Wednesday, February 6, 2008
In case you've ever wondered if Romney's candidacy has serious sex appeal, you've gotta check this out!
If you are reading this, you probably have that nervous knot in your stomach. The prospects of a McCain, Obama, or Clinton presidency leaves conservatives feeling very uneasy.
Now, this thing is not over...there are still nearly one thousand votes up for grabs. Things could still change, and we may still see Romney win this thing. But, the odds are against him and that's why we all have that knot in our stomachs.
If Romney does not win, there is one possible solution to the problem: a McCain-Romney ticket.
But in order for this to happen, it would require a few things:
1. Both John and Mitt (and their supporters) would have to swallow their pride. They have been fierce rivals...and it would take some humility from each of them. They both would have to admit where they are weak. Romney would have to defer to McCain on military decisions, McCain would defer to Romney on economic matters.
2. Romney would have to be persuaded that McCain will not run and govern as a liberal/moderate. McCain would have to reassure the base by running a conservative campaign and by not using the rhetoric of the left. It would be a hard decision by Romney, but if Mitt could be persuaded that McCain will be Reagan-like as president, and not try to out-Clinton everybody, then I think that Romney should accept the post.
The result could be a conservative reconciliation. Our forces would be united against the democrats this fall. Romney's ability to raise money would be combined with McCain's friends in the political world. A Mitt VP could be the means to reach out to fiscal conservatives and help us feel better about the future of the party.
Tuesday, February 5, 2008
Shortly after releasing his statement, Dr. Dobson was a quest on Dennis Prager's radio show, where he stated that he will cast his vote for Mitt Romney. While Dobson made it clear this was a personal decision and not a formal endorsement, he said he was willing to overlook the differences between evangelicals and Mormons in favor of the "strong leadership" Mitt Romney brings to the table.
As one of the most influential voices in the evangelical community, Dr. Dobson's statement is likely to have a strong influence on many evangelicals. It's worthwhile to note that Dobson has chosen to support Mitt Romney rather than fellow evangelical Mike Huckabee.
To read excerpts from Dobson's written statement and his radio interview with Mr. Prager click here.
Monday, February 4, 2008
So far the delegate numbers are as follows: Romney 93, McCain 97. So we are TIED.
Super-duper Tuesday delegates at stake: 1071
Post Super-duper Tuesday delegates: 978
Number of delegates needed to win the nomination: 1191
Bottom line: no one will have the nomination locked up tomorrow and there are plenty of delegates still up for grabs...this thing is far from over.
Three things to watch (and pray) for tomorrow...each would be a huge boost for Romney.
1. Romney picks up more delegates than expected.
2. A Romney California win could be very symbolic and momentum changing.
3. A poor Huckabee showing would make it a two man race...positioning Romney for the majority of the remaining 978 delegates. (Mike, give it up!)
Zogby says, "Romney is widening his lead in California and has a really big advantage with conservatives,...Romney winning California would give some Republicans pause when they look at McCain as the potential nominee." Full artice
Latest Zogby poll puts Mitt leading McCain in California 40 percent to 32 percent! This win will not only PUNCTURE McCain's perceived momentum...it will SLASH it. Get your Mitt on and vote!
Q: What do electric voting booths and cleverly-dressed line dancers have in common?
A: They shout, "Mitt's ELECTRIC!"
Sunday, February 3, 2008
Here's the quote in context:
"McCain seems distinctly uninterested when asked questions concerning abortion and gay rights. While campaigning in South Carolina, he told reporters riding with him on his bus that he was comfortable pledging to appoint judges who would strictly interpret the Constitution in part because it would reassure conservatives who might otherwise distrust him.
'It's not social issues I care about,' he explained."
Do social conservatives need any more reasons to be highly suspicious of this guy? I mean, here we are, just hours before Super Tuesday, and he admits to the national media that he doesn't care about issues of high moral importance to a huge portion of the GOP base, such as the sanctity of life.
What's more, he hints that he would appoint constructionist judges only so he could win the trust of the base, not because he personally believes in constructionist judges. He acts like he'd only do it to throw us a bone.
Add to this apostasy the fact that McCain has admitted he knows practically nothing about the economy, and we've got somebody who has no claim to be being a "true conservative" as he boasts in his TV commercials. Since when does being a war hawk alone qualify someone as a conservative? The truth is, a strong military is the ONLY thing McCain has in common with the GOP base--hardly enough to represent us as our President. To be a "true conservative" Mr. McCain, the social issues must be important to you, along with economic conservatism.
How could conservatives possibly reward this one dimensional candidate with the opportunity to represent the voices of full spectrum conservatives?
THE SIMPLE ANSWER IS: WE CAN'T!
For those in America who care about the defense of conservative moral values, we must vote for Mit Romney or we will suffer the consequences.
For the full text of the Washington Post article click here.
This race is far from over.
To see the newest poll results from California click here.
Saturday, February 2, 2008
While my posts below capture some of the "feel of the people", the event seemed to be a rousing success. According to Romney's staff, attendance was in the 750-1000 range, though I suspect it may be on the lower end of that range. There were people of all ages, including several families and retirees. The event itself was put together on relatively short notice, with the decision to come to Minnesota happening on Friday. Held at the HQ of Frauenshuh, Inc., the room could not have held many more people.
Those who attended got to hear a fairly typical stump speech from Gov. Romney, and his comments were well-received by the attendees. I thought Gov. Romney did fine, and he played to the crowd. Three criticisms: First, I thought the introduction was lacking, as it would have been great to have some Minnesota politicians present at the event to talk to the crowd. If nothing else, showing a couple of video clips or Romney campaign commercials would have been good. Mr. Frauenshuh, highly successful in the real estate business and active member of the Republican party, introduced Romney but he could have let us know a bit more about his decision to endorse the candidate and get the crowd a bit more excited.
Romney's stump speech was red meat for the mostly Republican crowd, with the usual attacks on Clinton and the Democrats. He did contrast himself with McCain as well, and clearly was viewing this as a two-man race for the nomination. However, this is the second issue I had with the speech. I thought Romney could have appealed to those undecided voters more, asking them to come support him in the march to the White House. That was also the case at the end of Romney's speech, as I felt like he could have put out the call, making a stronger case for those in attendance to go to the caucuses on Tuesday, or to call their friends to join them.
Still, it was an interesting night, and Romney did well by most accounts. Still, McCain may win the most delegates in Minnesota on Tuesday. After all, Mondale and Dukakis carried Minnesota in their resounding losses, so the moderate to liberal message of McCain will have some support here. Yet I think the results will be closer than McCain might think.
With Super Tuesday just days away, Mitt Romney made a short-notice stop today in Edina, Minnesota. Meeting with an enthusiastic crowd, Romney's stump speech was well-received by the largely partisan and conservative crowd. I had the chance to visit with many Minnesotans and ask them a number of questions about their support for Romney. Old and young, families, couples and singles came from up to 70 miles away to hear Romney speak. I put on my journalist hat and wanted to report some of what the public was thinking.
Most people in attendance were either long-time Romney supporters or had recently switched to support Romney. Romney’s recent performance in the debates was seen as critical by several people. Some had followed his progress since Iowa, lamenting Huckabee’s win there while believing Romney won that debate. A few people had initially supported Tancredo, Hunter or Thompson and had moved to Romney as the most conservative candidate left in the race.
Many were really impressed with Romney’s conservative credentials. His positions on illegal immigration, trade and his stand on social issues were well-received in this partisan crowd. In addition, many people spoke highly of Romney’s personal lifestyle, as he was viewed by many as a man of character, integrity and “tremendous values.”
The economy was the number one issue cited by countless individuals, and Romney’s background was mentioned by nearly every supporter. Romney’s experience in the private sector was seen as a huge plus. One individual mentioned that Romney was the kind of guy he would expect to see in the CEO’s office, and was hopeful that experience would translate well to the Oval Office. Several mentioned that Romney as a “pro-business outsider” would be a great asset for the country. His experience was cited time and time again.
Other issues cited by Romney’s supporters were his work as the governor of Massachusetts and his work with the Salt Lake City Olympics.
Those who were undecided seemed genuinely interested in learning more about Romney the man rather than Romney the politician. They were open minded and wanted to see what Romney had to say, really to find out more about him. The number one issue for the undecided voters was the economy. One undecided voter from St. Paul was “leaning to Romney because of his fiscal policy” but was considering Obama “for his social policies.”
Several in attendance had been former Huckabee supporters but “Huckabee lost touch with me” after his win in Iowa, while another lamented that after Iowa, “Huckabee flaked out” and that “Mitt was the most Presidential” Several were concerned that Huckabee was dividing the opposition to McCain, while quite a few thought that “Huckabee was too liberal”. Several thought that Huckabee was staying in just to “siphon off votes from Mitt.” Still, a few thought that Huckabee was promised the VP spot.
Many individuals were vehemently opposed to McCain, which is not surprising considering those who were attending. Others were more kind, but worried that “it is too bad he is so popular.” One individual mentioned that “McCain is a great guy, but he is not well-suited to be president.” Another individual noted that “McCain is a Democrat, who associates with Ted Kennedy and Clinton”. Another called McCain a “quasi-Republican” and was supporting Romney because he could “drive the change we are looking for”. McCain’s attack of Romney by using the “timetable in Iraq” argument was particularly strong by several attendees. Several individuals called McCain “disgusting, smarmy and a liberal (as in the Clinton fashion).” One mentioned that McCain is running on his record in Vietnam, but that was “ancient history”. He wanted to see someone who was not a roadblock and who would “reduce the size of government.” “McCain has been in Washington too long” lamented one attendee, and Romney was the guy who could bring real change.
One individual mentioned she would “have to leave the country if Hillary wins”, and believed that Romney would put the country on the right course.
On the LDS issue (which I didn’t initially ask about), several volunteered that his standing in the LDS added to his integrity. One young Romney supporter from Corcoran, MN noted that “it is awesome that we have a Mormon running for President.” It seems like Romney has the strong support of the Minnesota LDS community, though my sense is that the majority in attendance were not LDS members.
I also asked the attendees about who would win the Minnesota caucuses. While no one predicted a runaway Romney win (he was running third in some polls), many at the rally thought it was too close to call. McCain has not visited Minnesota, and the number of likely caucus-goers is relatively small and that makes the polls hard to predict. My sense is that Romney’s supporters were really excited about the caucus and would out in force on Tuesday. In addition, many of the independent voters are likely to caucus for Obama in Minnesota. So while some were holding out for a “squeaker” or calling it a “toss-up”, most were realistic in their assessment in Minnesota.
It is yet another sign that Romney's strength continues to grow, despite premature predictions that McCain is the "inevitable" nominee (give me a break). Conservatives are waking up and realizing that Romney is an excellent candidate and a far superior alternative to John McCain, who as recently as 2004 considered joining the Democratic party. In 2004 McCain even begged Democrat John Kerry to be his vice presidential running mate. Are you kidding me? It's true. Google it.
The truth is, John McCain is no conservative, and he's never going to be able to convince conservatives otherwise, no matter how hard the grizzled old senator tries.
For anyone who's counting Mitt's finishes in the early primary races, that's four gold medals and three silvers. No other candidate comes close, polls be damned.
To read the full story about Mitt's landslide win in the Maine caucuses click here.
McCain now says he opposed the Bush tax cuts because they did not come with spending cuts. Back when he voted against them (1 of only 2 Republicans to do so) he said that they favored the wealthy.
Apparently my 5-year-old understands economics better than McCain. Maybe if John has some time between campaign stops, he can learn something by reading this:
Bar Stool Economics
Suppose that every day, ten men go out for beer and the bill for all ten comes to $100. If they paid their bill the way we pay our taxes, it would go something like this: The first four men (the poorest) would pay nothing. The fifth would pay $1. The sixth would pay $3. The seventh would pay $7. The eighth would pay $12. The ninth would pay $18. The tenth man (the richest) would pay $59. So, that's what they decided to do.
The ten men drank in the bar every day and seemed quite happy with the arrangement, until one day, the owner threw them a curve. "Since you are all such good customers," he said, "I'm going to reduce the cost of your daily beer by $20. Drinks for the ten now cost just $80. The group still wanted to pay their bill the way we pay our taxes so the first four men were unaffected. They would still drink for free. But what about the other six men, the paying customers? How could they divide the $20 windfall so that everyone would get his 'fair share?' They realized that $20 divided by six is $3.33. But if they subtracted that from everybody's share, then the fifth man and the sixth man would each end up being paid to drink his beer. So, the bar owner suggested that it would be fair to reduce each man's bill by roughly the same amount, and he proceeded to work out the amounts each should pay. And so: The fifth man, like the first four, now paid nothing (100% savings). The sixth now paid $2 instead of $3 (33%savings). The seventh now pay $5 instead of $7 (28%savings). The eighth now paid $9 instead of $12 (25% savings). The ninth now paid $14 instead of $18 (22% savings). The tenth now paid $49 instead of $59 (16% savings).
Each of the six was better off than before. And the first four continued to drink for free. But once outside the restaurant, the men began to compare their savings. I only got a dollar out of the $20,"declared the sixth man. He pointed to the tenth man," but he got $10!" "Yeah, that's right," exclaimed the fifth man. "I only saved a dollar, too. It's unfair that he got ten times more than I!" "That's true!!" shouted the seventh man. "Why should he get $10 back when I got only two? The wealthy get all the breaks!" "Wait a minute," yelled the first four men in unison. "We didn't get anything at all. The system exploits the poor!" The nine men surrounded the tenth and beat him up.
The next night the tenth man didn't show up for drinks, so the nine sat down and had beers without him. But when it came time to pay the bill, they discovered something important. They didn't have enough money between all of them for even half of the bill!
And that, ladies and gentlemen, journalists and college professors, is how our tax system works. The people who pay the highest taxes get the most benefit from a tax reduction. Tax them too much, attack them for being wealthy, and they just may not show up anymore. In fact, they might start drinking overseas where the atmosphere is somewhat friendlier.
-David R. Kamerschen, Ph.D. Professor of Economics University of Georgia
For those who understand, no explanation is needed. For those who do not understand, no explanation is possible.
Friday, February 1, 2008
Wake up people! Conservatives cannot afford to pass on Mitt Romney. A John McCain nomination will doom the GOP. Not only will McCain likely get trounced by Clinton in a general election, but if he did happen to squeak out a victory, he would lead our party down the road to liberalism.
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