Saturday, December 10, 2011

Complete ABC News Yahoo Republican Iowa Debate



ABC Iowa Debate Reaction Roundup

The $10,000 Bet

Newt responding to Romney attack, the Kennedy line

Newt defending Israel and his Palestinian comments:

Perry standing up for Newt on Palestinian comment, best of night

Video highlights via Le·gal In·sur·rec·tion

Drake Debate Post-Op & Tweets of Night - Le·gal In·sur·rec·tion

Gingrich Holds Steady; Second Tier Shines - Rich Lowry/National Review

ABC Iowa Debate Reaction Roundup - The Other Mccain

Des Moines Republican debate decisive? - Jennifer Rubin/Washington Post

Iowa Debate: Newt Knocks Mitt's Glass Jaw to the Floor - Charles P. Pierce /Esquire

Livestreaming the Iowa Republican Debate

Livestreamed here (will add feed if they give embed code)
http://www.myabc5.com/stream

WHAT: Debate among Republican candidates for president
WHEN: 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. PT tonight (starts at 9:00 PM Eastern Time)
WHERE: Sheslow Auditorium, Drake University. All tickets are sold out.
WHO: Six candidates will participate: Michele Bachmann, Newt Gingrich, Ron Paul, Rick Perry, Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum. Jon Huntsman did not meet criteria tied to standings in state and national polls.
HOSTS: ABC News, local affiliate WOI-TV, The Des Moines Register, Yahoo and the Republican Party of Iowa.
MODERATORS: ABC News anchors Diane Sawyer and George Stephanopoulos.
HOW TO WATCH: Airs nationally on the ABC television network and in central Iowa on WOI-TV, Channel 5. Will be livestreamed by those sources and here, at DesMoinesRegister.com/caucus.
PROTESTS: Occupy Des Moines protesters plan to be on the scene.

Live chat: ABC Republican debate

GOP Debate Watch Thread: Des Moines, IA – ABC News - Hillbuzz
WATCH TONIGHT’S DEBATE WITH DICK MORRIS
Live Blog at Legal Insurrection
Live Blog at Ace of Spades
Live Blog at Michelle Malkin

New Newt Gingrich ad: Newt Now


__________________
Newt Gingrich

SEC warns LightSquared figure of potential fraud probe

SEC warns LightSquared figure of potential fraud probe - Ed Morrissey/HotAir

It’s been a bad week for big Democratic donors. First Jon Corzine, one of Barack Obama’s main bundlers and his liaison to Wall Street, told Congress on Thursday that he had no idea that the firm he ran had somehow lost $1.2 billion in customer money attempting to cover losses from Corzine’s bets on European sovereign debt. Last night, another Wall Street figure in Democratic donor circles got news that the SEC may open a civil-fraud probe based on his operation of a hedge fund and the favorable treatment given to yet another Democrat-linked Wall Street firm...

This probe is separate from the issues surrounding LightSquared, however, but it involves more than just the $50 million Falcone apparently allowed Goldman Sachs to withdraw while preventing other investors from cashing out of Harbinger. They have already begun probing a loan Falcone took from the Harbinger fund, as well as “market manipulation,” but it’s apparently the Goldman Sachs withdrawal that has the SEC most exercised at the moment.

The news has one Senator asking for a more in-depth look at LightSquared’s connections to regulators...

SEC Puts Falcone, Harbinger in Its Sights - Steve Eder/Wall St. Journal

Hedge-fund manager Philip Falcone was threatened with possible civil-fraud charges from the top U.S. securities regulator, the latest in a series of setbacks that have buffeted the investor since he rocketed to stardom in 2007.

Mr. Falcone and his firm, Harbinger Capital Partners LLC, received so-called Wells notices from the Securities and Exchange Commission, according to a regulatory filing Friday, an indication that charges are likely.

Among the issues the SEC has explored is whether Harbinger agreed to allow some investors, including Goldman Sachs Group Inc., to cash out of their holdings while barring other clients from withdrawing their money, ...


Average US Family Lost $21K in 6 Months Due To Property Values, Stock Market

The average US household lost $21,261 of net worth this summer, the largest decline in family wealth in nearly three years. - New York Post

The drop in the third quarter, tied to falling home values and a cratering stock market, is the second straight quarter of eroding wealth, according to the Federal Reserve's quarterly report, released Thursday.

The Newt-Gingrich-Pile-On debate preview

The first Republican presidential debate with Newt Gingrich as a front-runner - Ed Morrissey/HotAir

Two candidates won’t appear in tonight’s debate. Herman Cain suspended his campaign and will likely announce an endorsement in the near future. Jon Huntsman will conduct a townhall in New Hampshire, having not met the threshold of polling support in Iowa to participate tonight.

Gingrich vs Romney rivalry in Iowa debate spotlight - Reuters

Eric Fehrnstrom, a senior adviser to Romney, said direct exchanges between the two candidates were inevitable and he expected Gingrich would feel the heat of the spotlight more in his first debate as a frontrunner.

"I think there will be some vetting," he said.

Gingrich's campaign organized a conference call on Friday to respond to Romney's most recent attacks, calling them a sign of panic and desperation and promising to fight back.

"No campaign just lays down and allows an opponent to stab you in the heart," said former Congressman Greg Ganske, a Gingrich supporter. "It deserves a response."


Gingrich Focus of Iowa Debate as Palestinian Comment Questioned - Bloomberg

Tonight’s Republican debate in Iowa presents a field narrowed by the absence of Jon Huntsman and Herman Cain and focused by the ascendancy of Newt Gingrich, who is shouldering criticism for comments he made to Jewish media about Palestinians and peace with Israel.

Calling the Mideast peace process “delusional,” Gingrich said in an interview with the Jewish Channel cable TV network that the Palestinians are “invented people.”

Weekly Republican Address: Speaker Boehner on the Middle Class Tax Relief & Job Creation Act



In the Weekly Republican Address, House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) touts the Middle Class Tax Relief & Job Creation Act, legislation the House will vote on next week that will help to create thousands of new American jobs while helping families struggling with the consequences of President Obama's failed economic policies. This jobs bill (H.R. 3630) will extend the payroll tax cut, protect Social Security, reform and extend unemployment insurance, and extend pro-growth tax relief for businesses of all sizes -- while also advancing several bipartisan measures that will directly support the creation of private-sector jobs, including the Keystone XL energy pipeline. Everything in the House bill is offset by spending cuts, rather than through tax increases that would hit small businesses and destroy jobs, as proposed in Senate Democrats' bill.

Two teachers' unions in Racine County disband

Two area teachers' unions have disbanded in relation to Gov. Scott Walker's legislative changes to public union rules. - The Journal Times

The North Cape School District teachers' union last week did not get a majority of members to vote for recertification, something now required annually because of Walker's changes, which also essentially eliminated collective bargaining for teachers' unions. The Yorkville School District teachers' union did not hold a recertification vote, instead voting earlier this fall to simply disband.

Of North Cape's 18 teachers' union members, five voted for recertification Thursday while six voted against it, according to the Wisconsin Employment Relations Commission. North Cape union officials did not return phone calls Friday.

In Yorkville, teachers voted by mail in late September to disband their union. Of 34 members, 29 returned the paper ballots and all voted to disband, according to Becky Seitz, the former union president.

"In the 30-some years we were part of the (American Federation of Teachers union), we never had to use their services. There were never any grievances that warranted that," Seitz said, explaining teachers found it unnecessary to keep paying monthly dues of about $50 when they weren't using union services anyway. "We really - and I'm going to be honest - never really got much out of it. We've always had a good relationship with our administrators and our board."

ABC News/Des Moines Register Primetime GOP Debate at Drake University Iowa TONIGHT


Diane Sawyer and George Stephanopoulos to Moderate from Des Moines, Iowa - Politisite

ABC News’ Republican presidential candidate debate in Iowa with ABC5/WOI-DT and the Republican Party of Iowa will take place on Saturday, December 10. This debate, to be moderated by ABC News anchors Diane Sawyer and George Stephanopoulos, (comes) at a critical moment in the Republican nomination process – less than a month before the state’s “first-in-the-nation” caucuses.

The debate will air in primetime from 9:00-11:00pm ET (6:00-8:00 PT) nationally on the ABC Television Network, locally on ABC5/WOI-DT, and will air on ABCNews.com and Yahoo.com. It will be the only broadcast network debate in primetime before the caucuses. ABC News will re-air an excerpted version of the debate the following Sunday morning on “This Week with Christiane Amanpour.”

The candidates will be asked about the critical issues the country faces in front of a live audience on the campus of Drake University in Des Moines.

ABC Iowa Debate: Press Credential Guidelines for ABC News Debate on December 10 in Des Moines - ABC

Iowa Debate: The Des Moines Register Added as Co-Sponsor of Dec. 10 GOP Debate on ABC (The Des Moines Register is canceling its previously announced Dec. 19 debate, planned in partnership with Iowa Public Television. The announcement streamlines what had become a crowded debate calendar in Iowa. In addition to the Dec. 10 ABC debate at Drake University in Des Moines, Fox News and the Republican Party of Iowa are hosting a debate Dec. 15 in Sioux City.)
__________________
◼ BOOKMARK THIS: Real Clear Politics 2012 ELECTION DATES

LightSquared disrupts 75% of GPS receivers in gov’t testing

The saga of LightSquared added a new chapter last night, as Bloomberg reported on the preliminary result of tests of the satellite Internet provider’s service in relation to GPS devices. - Ed Morrissey/HotAir

The Obama administration has pushed LightSquared as a provider for its ambitious broadband expansion over the objections of the military, which warned that LightSquared’s operations would interfere with the satellite-based navigational system. The draft summary of the November testing shows that the military was right to be concerned....

If that was all there was to this story, then this would just be another commercial venture that struck out, with little interest outside the tech fields involved. However, the overwhelming failure of LightSquared’s test puts allegations from last summer in a new light. ◼ In September, four-star Air Force General William Shelton ◼ accused the White House of pressuring him in August to change his Congressional testimony to make his assessment of LightSquared more favorable. Another Congressional witness told Eli Lake that ◼ the White House had “offered guidance” on how to testify favorably towards LightSquared.

Why is this important? Philip Falcone is a big donor to the Democratic Party, and he has billions of dollars at stake in LightSquared’s approval. Also, ◼ Obama himself was an investor in LightSquared at one point, as were or are a number of his associates. The resounding failure in this test makes it look like the White House pressured witnesses to back off of exposing LightSquared’s product as exactly the kind of dangerous problem that critics had maintained all along — with the intent to mislead Congress into moving forward with LightSquared’s government contracts.

Falcone’s LightSquared Said to Disrupt 75% of GPS in Tests - Todd Shields/Bloomberg

The laboratory testing was performed for the National Space-Based Positioning, Navigation, and Timing (PNT) Systems Engineering Forum, an executive branch body that helps advise policy makers on issues around GPS. It found that 69 of 92, or 75 percent, of receivers tested “experienced harmful interference” at the equivalent of 100 meters (109 yards) from a LightSquared base station.
For Obama, lack of huge stock portfolio helps avoid need for blind trust - Michael D. Shear/Washington Post

TSA Facing Death By a Thousand Cuts

"The Transportation Security Administration is getting a lot of negative attention, much of it from the U.S. government itself. A recent congressional report blasted the TSA for ◼ being incompetent and ineffective (PDF). A bill to force the TSA to reduce its screening of active duty U.S. military members and their families ◼ was approved unanimously by the House of Representatives. After a TSA employee was arrested for ◼ sexually assaulting a woman while in uniform, a bill has been introduced ◼ linkto prevent TSA agents from wearing police-style uniforms and badges or using the title 'officer.' The bill's sponsor calls these practices 'an insult to real cops.' The FBI is getting involved by changing its definition of rape in a way that ◼ might expose the TSA's 'enhanced pat-down' screeners to prosecution. Lastly, ◼ public support for the TSA's use of X-ray body scanners drops dramatically when people realize there is a cancer risk."

Post and discussion at Slashdot h/t: P

CBS poll: 75% Say Country Headed In Wrong Direction, 66% Have No Idea What Obama Wants To Do If Reelected, 54% say Obama does not deserve re-election



CBS Poll: 75% Say Country Headed In Wrong Direction, 66% Have No Idea What Obama Wants To Do If Reelected… - Weasel Zippers


Despite a three-month strategy to claim the moral high ground through class warfare, not-so-coincidentally occurring with labor-backed protests in most major cities, Barack Obama’s approval numbers have not changed much at all. The latest CBS survey shows his job approval under water at 44/46, but that’s not the worst part of the poll results for the President - Ed Morrissey/HotAir
Grim economic outlook weighs down Obama approval rating - CBS News
Less than one year out from Election Day 2012, voters remain overwhelmingly pessimistic about the economy, and their concerns are taking a toll on President Obama’s re-election chances. Just 41 percent of Americans think Mr. Obama has performed his job well enough to be elected to a second term, whereas 54 percent don’t think so.

Mr. Obama receives better marks on foreign policy and for his leadership skills. But when it comes to leading the economy in the right direction, voters are unimpressed: Just 28 percent think he has made progress on improving the economy. And most Americans say the president doesn’t share the public’s priorities, according to the poll, conducted December 5-7.

CFRW: Capitol Update

Time Is Running Out!

We need your help to Stop AB 131, the California Dream Act! The deadline to return completed petitions is only a couple of weeks away and we need all the help we can get! Please continue gathering signatures and send in completed petitions, NO LATER THAN DECEMBER 30th, to Stop AB 131:
Tim Donnelly
P.O. Box 877
Monrovia, CA 91017
If you need more petitions for signature gathering, please email the CFRW Advocate at advocate@cfrw.org. Please visit www.StopAB131.com for more information. California cannot afford to pay for college for illegal immigrants. The estimated cost will be $65 million for the first year alone. The California Dream Act is not fair to hard working, legal California students trying to pay for college. Stop this bill now!

More Ballot Measures

Now this is a ballot measure we can get behind! This week the initiative to ban payroll deductions for political spending qualified to be on the November general election ballot. The initiative would prohibit unions and corporations from automatically deducting money from employee’s check for political disbursements. It would also include a prohibition on unions, corporations or contractors that currently work for the government from giving to a political candidate’s campaigns. This is most commonly called “payroll protection” and it will be on the ballot for the first time since 2005. Stay tuned as more ballot measures qualify for the general election. We must remain informed and educated on the issues!

The SB 48 Fight Is Not Over

Earlier this week the Capitol Resource Institute and other pro-family organizations submitted an initiative to the Attorney General to counter the effects of SB 48. If you will recall, the referendum to repeal SB 48 fell short of the signatures necessary to put the measure on the ballot. But unfazed by the hurdle, the same organizations have this time filed an initiative effort. They hope to curb some of the harmful effects of SB 48. SB 48 mandates that by 2015 all social science textbooks from Kindergarten to 12th grade include a “gay-history” chapter in publically funded California schools. The initiative will assure “that lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and other minority figures are not excluded from inclusion in California curriculum while requiring accurate historical portrayals of all individuals.” Visit www.stopsb48.com for more information. Signature gatherers will be needed for this initiative soon, so if you are interested in helping, please email the CFRW Legislative Advocate at advocate@cfrw.org.

Disclaimer: The Capitol Update is an activity of the CFRW Advocate's Office. The update is for information only. CFRW official positions on legislation are stated immediately preceding the stated legislation or immediately following the stated legislation in this report.

View this article online: http://www.cfrw.org/index.cfm/article_177.htm

Mariann Hedstrom, President California Federation of Republican Women
Allison Olson, CFRW Legislative Advocate

John Boehner Calls the President’s Bluff

Jobs are the top priority. Republicans say it. Democrats say it. And most interestingly, President Obama says it. - Douglas Holtz-Eakin/National Review

From a policy perspective, this should mean that economic growth is the preeminent policy objective, trumping competing objectives. What, then, explains the recent performance of President Obama?

White House Rejects GOP Payroll Tax Proposal… It Would Create Too Many Jobs - Jim Hoft/Gateway Pundit

The White House on Friday rejected the Republican payroll tax proposal that would include a pay freeze for overpaid federal workers and approval of TransCanada’s Keystone XL pipeline. The White House says it’s not fair.

White House rejects Republican payroll tax proposal - Reuters

DEMS MOVE TO BAN 'OCCUPY' FROM THEIR 2012 CONVENTION

Charlotte Prepping for Occupy Wall Street at DNC - Joe Coscarelli/New York Mag via Drudge

The North Carolina city, sometimes called the "Wall Street of the South," is not taking any chances, and is already working to pass an ordinance that would make occupying downtown spaces with tents a "public nuisance," in addition to banning "noxious substances," padlocks, and other camping equipment. The fact that it would knock out the city's current overnight demonstrators is an added bonus....

A local National Lawyers Guild director says that the rule's constitutionality might be challenged and could even spur "increased confrontation between protesters and police." For their part, the protesters say they don't even have a plan for the DNC yet, but acknowledge the opportunity it presents. "Everybody I talked to said the DNC is ground zero for everything," said one organizer. "Everybody wants to be involved. We're estimating several thousands of people coming especially from the Occupy community." The idea of an alternative convention has been floated, while another Occupy organizer called the DNC "a powder keg." Tents or no tents, Charlotte "has got a big target on it," he said.

Obama Blames the Rich

He does not understand the sources of economic mobility. - Rich Lowry/National Review

A haze of ugliness hung over Pres. Barack Obama earlier this week in Osawatomie, Kan., where he delivered a speech as malodorous as an Occupy Wall Street encampment and about as thoughtful.

...We should endeavor to create the conditions for economic growth, transform education fundamentally, and champion the bourgeois virtues at every opportunity. But President Obama only wants shiny new wrapping paper for his same old proposals — taxes on the rich, infrastructure spending, and regulation. This familiar litany is now supposed to be the answer to complex, decades-long trends. It’s good to know he takes himself so seriously; no one else should.

Obama’s campaign for class resentment - Charles Krauthammer/Washington Post

In the first month of his presidency, Barack Obama averred that if in three years he hadn’t alleviated the nation’s economic pain, he’d be a “one-term proposition.”

When three-quarters of Americans think the country is on the “wrong track” and even Bill Clinton calls the economy “lousy,” how then to run for a second term? Traveling Tuesday to Osawatomie, Kan., site of a famous 1910 Teddy Roosevelt speech, Obama laid out the case.

It seems that he and his policies have nothing to do with the current state of things. Sure, presidents are ordinarily held accountable for economic growth, unemployment, national indebtedness (see Obama, above). But not this time. Responsibility, you see, lies with the rich.

...In Kansas, Obama lamented that millions “are now forced to take their children to food banks.” You have to admire the audacity. That’s the kind of damning observation the opposition brings up when you’ve been in office three years. Yet Obama summoned it to make the case for his reelection!

Why? Because, you see, he bears no responsibility for the current economic distress. It’s the rich. And, like Horatius at the bridge, Obama stands with the American masses against the soulless plutocrats.

This is populism so crude that it channels not Teddy Roosevelt so much as Hugo Chavez. But with high unemployment, economic stagnation and unprecedented deficits, what else can Obama say?

He can’t run on stewardship. He can’t run on policy. His signature initiatives — the stimulus, Obamacare and the failed cap-and-trade — will go unmentioned in his campaign ads. Indeed, they will be the stuff of Republican ads.

What’s left? Class resentment. Got a better idea?

Friday, December 9, 2011

T. Boone Pickens Wants Obama To Tell Him What His 'Fair Share' of Taxes Is

California Supreme Court to fast-track ruling on Senate maps

The California Supreme Court expects to rule "as early as the end of January" on which state Senate districts would apply to next year's state elections if a referendum challenging newly drawn maps qualifies for the November ballot. - Jim Sanders/Sacramento Bee

The high court released an expedited briefing schedule today in response to a petition by Fairness and Accountability in Redistricting, a Republican-backed group pushing to kill the Senate maps drawn by the Citizens Redistricting Commission.
The group, known as FAIR, has submitted more than 700,000 signatures to the state. If 504,760 of those signatures are from valid voters, the group's referendum will qualify for the November ballot.

To prepare for that possibility, the state Supreme Court must decide which state Senate districts would be used in next primary and general elections while a statewide vote on the referendum is pending.

Justices told both parties to submit arguments this month in preparation for oral arguments in early January.

GOP questions ‘two-month gap’ in Kagan’s health care involvement

At the very least... the revealed emails raise serious questions about Justice Kagan’s ability to impartially rule on ObamaCare. - Sister Toldjah
Internal DOJ Email: Kagan Was Brought Into Loop on Mark Levin’s Obamacare Complaint - Terence P. Jeffrey/CNS News

Internal Justice Department email communications made just days before the House of Representatives passed the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act show that then-Solicitor General Elena Kagan was brought into the loop as DOJ began preparing to respond to an anticipated legal complaint that Mark Levin and the Landmark Legal Foundation were planning to file against the act if the House used a procedural rule to “deem” the bill passed even if members never directly voted on it.

In another internal DOJ email communication that same week, Kagan alerted the chief of DOJ’s Office of Legal Counsel to the constitutional argument that a former U.S. Appeals Court judge was making against the use of this rule.

Then, during Kagan’s Supreme Court confirmation process four months later, Republicans on the Senate Judiciary Committee asked her in writing if she had “ever been asked about your opinion” or “offered any view or comments” on the “the underlying legal or constitutional issues related to any proposed health care legislation, including but not limited to Pub. L. No. 111-148 [PPACA], or the underlying legal or constitutional issues related to potential litigation resulting from such legislation?"

Kagan answered both questions: “No.”


GOP questions ‘two-month gap’ in Kagan’s health care involvement - Washington Times

The top Republican on the House Judiciary Committee said Thursday the Obama administration is fueling speculation about Justice Elena Kagan’s impartiality because it won’t turn over documents detailing her role in crafting the legal strategy to defend the health care law.

Rep. Lamar Smith, the committee chairman, told Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. that emails show Justice Kagan took an interest in the case in January 2010, when she was solicitor general, and he demanded to know what role she played between then and March 2010, when President Obama tapped her to sit on the high court.

“The issue is how involved was she in health care discussions between Jan. 8 and March 5. Just as President Nixon had an 18½-minute gap, does Ms. Kagan have a two-month gap?” Mr. Smith said.

Conservative groups have called for Justice Kagan to recuse herself from ruling on the health care case, which the Supreme Court last month said it will consider next year.

Mr. Smith has requested a fuller explanation of Justice Kagan’s role. He said the Justice Department denied his request, but never cited any legal privilege to withhold information.


Leading senators: Kagan may have to recuse herself from health case - Stephen Dinan/Washington Times (Nov 18)

Anti-Corporate Totalitarian Wing of Democrat Party Proposes Constitutional Amendment to Censor Newspapers

It shouldn't come as much of a surprise. These are the same radical Leftists who re-proposed the ill-named "Fairness Doctrine" and, that having received a royal flushing, are now marketing "local community standards" for broadcasters. - Doug Ross

Proposed Constitutional Amendment Would Ban Editorials About Candidates or Ballot Measures by Nearly All Newspapers - Eugene Volokh/The Volokh Conspiracy
Nearly all newspapers, TV stations, cable networks, and rations (except of course for nonprofits such as NPR) are organized as corporations or other entities established for business purposes. Under section 3, they “shall be prohibited” from making expenditures “in any election of any candidate ... or the vote upon any ballot measure.” Since to write or print or broadcast anything, newspapers, networks, and broadcasters must spend money, this would ban — not just authorize Congress to ban, but itself ban — editorials supporting or opposing a candidate or a ballot measure.

...Now perhaps one could argue that, notwithstanding sections 1 and section 3, (H. J. RES. 90) business entities retain the “freedom of the press” even though they lose all other constitutional rights. But, as I’ve discussed in considerable detail in this article, the “freedom of the press” has throughout American history meant the freedom of all to use communications technology, not a freedom limited to any specific industry. So if business entities do still have “freedom of the press” rights, which leaves the New York Times free to exercise such rights, then other business corporations would have the same rights as well, including the right to rent space or time in newspapers and television and radio programs to express their views, much as newspapers, cable networks, and broadcasters have the right to use such space or time.

On top of that, the proposal would mean that any government could take corporate property — whether of big businesses or small closely held corporations — without paying any compensation at all, could take corporate property without due process, and more. That would be quite a constitutional amendment.

Gingrich: If They Fear Trump, How Do They Handle Obama?

Newt Gingrich blasted his Republican cohorts Friday for refusing to attend The Newsmax ION Television 2012 Presidential Debate, saying they can’t expect to defeat Barack Obama if they’re worried about moderator Donald Trump. - Newsmax

"I think if you're afraid to debate with Donald Trump, people are going to say, 'so you want me to believe you can debate Barack Obama but you're afraid to show up with Donald Trump?'" the ex-House Speaker said on Friday expanding comments he made to Fox News' Greta Van Susteren earlier in the week.

"It strikes me that it's kind of a very weak position. I don't know why people would do that."

Former Massachusetts Gov. Romney declined earlier in the week without giving specific reasons. Ron Paul, Rick Perry, Jon Huntsman and Michele Bachmann have declined as well.

And on Friday radio host Don Imus expressed surprise at candidates who declined an invitation to the Trump Debate Sponsored by Newsmax and ION Television.

“It would be the most watched debate of any of them,” he said.

Newsmax and Trump have said they will forge ahead with the debate.

Rick Santorum has said he will join Gingrich in the debate.
__________________

Tuesday, December 27, 2011 8:00 PM ET (5:00 PM PT) Join The Newsmax ION Television 2012 Presidential Debate for the most important meeting of the major Republican candidates before the Iowa caucus and primaries in New Hampshire, South Carolina and Florida!

Moderated by Donald Trump, the Newsmax ION Television 2012 Debate will be streamed over Newsmax.com, the largest online conservative news portal in the nation, and be broadcast live on the ION Television network to 100 million U.S. homes.

RSVP HERE to get special notices about this debate, be invited to online VIP events before and after the Debate and have an opportunity to participate online in the event itself!

Man Says He’s Signed Recall Forms 80 Times; ‘I’m Gonna Cheat to Get Scott Walker Out of Here’

Still: the Wisconsin Government Accountability Board will not be on the look out for duplicate or fraudulent signatures. - Brett Healy/Breitbart's Big Government
Tea Party Groups Vow to Verify Recall Signatures - MacIver News Service

VerifyTheRecall.com

In Wisconsin: What can you do to help secure the integrity of Wisconsin's elections?
Volunteer to Verify The Recall!


We have all been hearing reports of duplicate signatures, questionable practices, and downright fraud in the gubernatorial recall effort. In the last few weeks, there has been a public outcry to build a system to check the submitted signatures after learning that the Government Accountability Board (GAB) will assume all signatures are valid unless challenged as otherwise. The integrity of Wisconsin's elections and associated processes are at stake; free and honest elections - the cornerstone of our political process - are being threatened.

In response, We the People of the Republic and The Wisconsin Grandsons of Liberty have teamed up to organize an effort to check the validity of ALL signatures submitted in the ongoing gubernatorial recall! Software has been developed that will help identify duplicate signatures and other signature irregularities (questionable addresses, etc.). Additionally, individuals will be able to look up their name and address on a website to see if they have been included as a petition signor. By taking such efforts, we will be able to protect the integrity of Wisconsin's elections by ensuring that only legitimate Wisconsin electors are counted - once - as signors of petitions!

At this time, we are assembling a grassroots team of volunteers to assist with data entry into the database. There will be more than half a million names to enter into the database... Thankfully, we expect thousands of volunteers from across Wisconsin (and the nation) to sign up for this project! Because all data entry will occur online, volunteers will be able to enter data into the database from the comfort of their own home.

We will not be able to start entering data into the database until the gubernatorial recall drive is finished and the data is publicly available from the GAB. That said, in the mean time, we will assemble our grassroots team and conduct training sessions for our volunteers. Please sign up now if you're interested in participating!

Attorney General Eric Holder: Lying 'has to do with your state of mind'...


HOLDER: 'Nobody at DOJ lied' - Philip Klein/Washington Examiner



'Lying,' Holder Says, 'Has to Do With Your State of Mind' - Daniel Halper/Weekly Standard

HOLDER COMPARES ISSA TO JOE MCCARTHY - Philip Klein/Washington Examiner

Fireworks broke out in Congress today, as Rep. Rep Darrell Issa, R-Calif., warned Attorney General Eric Holder that he could be held in contempt of Congress for his failure to cooperate with an investigation into the Fast and Furious program, in which the Obama administration allowed guns to "walk" into Mexico, where they ended up in the hands of Mexican drug lords.

The exchange, which occurred at the end of a House Judiciary committee hearing that lasted nearly seven hours including recesses, exploded as Issa compared Holder's stonewalling to the Nixon era and Holder responded by comparing Issa's tactics to Sen. Joe McCarthy's.

Issa, who chairs the House Oversight and Government Reform committee that is investigating the Fast and Furious program, pressed Holder on whether he would comply with a subpoena request to release documents crucial to the probe. The California congressman noted that if Holder did not cooperate or give a good reason for not providing the documents, he risked being held in contempt of Congress.

Holder said he would consider the request, and respond as prior Attorneys General had.

Issa responded by comparing Holder to John Mitchell -- a reference to one of President Nixon's Attorneys General, who was implicated in the Watergate scandal.

Holder fired back by invoking the McCarthy-era line, "Have you no shame?"

To which Issa retorted, "Have YOU no shame?"

(One of Obama's top fundraisers), John Corzine 'stunned' cash can't be found; Weird coincidence: Obama bundler Corzine got a range of regulatory "gifts" before his firm collapsed


As the first former U.S. senator to be subpoenaed by Congress in more than a century, Jon Corzine testified Thursday about the “last chaotic days” of MF Global, the trading firm that declared bankruptcy under his watch. - LA Times

“I simply do not know where the money is or why the accounts have not been reconciled to date,” he said in testimony before the House Agriculture Committee.

Weird coincidence: Obama bundler Corzine got a range of regulatory "gifts" before his firm collapsed - Doug Ross
Loss May Be Soros's Gain - Gregory Zuckerman AND Dana Cimilluca/Wall St. Journal via Drudge

Investor George Soros's family fund bought about $2 billion of European bonds formerly owned by MF Global Holdings Ltd., the very debt that helped force the securities firm to file for bankruptcy protection Oct. 31, according to people close to the matter.

Under the direction of MF Global's former chief executive, Jon S. Corzine, the firm accumulated $6.3 billion of short-term debt issued by various European nations, mostly from Italy, in a bid to boost trading profits. Over the summer, this debt led to nervousness by investors, regulators and ratings companies, resulting in the firm's collapse just over a month ...


Jon Corzine, Obama bundler, Obama Wall Street point man, golden parachute - GOP.com (Oct 2011)

Rick Perry: Repeal


__________________
Rick Perry

Bachmann to Trump: You’re fired

CBN’s David Brody gets the scoop on Michele Bachmann’s response to the invitation to the Donald Trump forum on December 27th in Iowa. Apparently, she has something better to do one week before the caucuses

Michele Bachmann’s campaign tells The Brody File that she will NOT attend the Newsmax debate moderated by Donald Trump on December 27th. Mitt Romney, Rick Perry, Ron Paul and Jon Huntsman have also declined. That leaves Newt Gingrich and Rick Santorum as the only ones who have said they will attend. A Lincoln/Douglas debate anyone?

Bachmann is mightily busy in Iowa where she must pull off a top three finish to remain viable. The Brody File has said that Bachmann’s organizational strength among pastors and homeschoolers gives her the real shot at doing very well in Iowa. - David Brody/CBN

"Due to the rising cost of payment card acceptance, we kindly ask you to pay with cash—especially for purchases under $10"

Debit-Fee Cap Has Nasty Side Effect - Robin Sidel, Wall Street Journal

A new law that was supposed to reduce costs for merchants that accept debit cards has instead sent Mr. Scherr's monthly processing bills much higher and forced him to reassess the way he does business.

"My choice is to raise prices, discount for cash or get an ATM," says Mr. Scherr, a lawyer who has been in the coffee-shop business for more than a decade.

Just two months after one of the most controversial parts of the Dodd-Frank financial-overhaul law was enacted, some merchants and consumers are starting to pay the price....

"There will be some unhappy parties, as there always is when the government gets in the way of the free-market system," says Chris McWilton, president of U.S. markets for MasterCard Inc. He said the company decided that it couldn't sustain the discounts under the new rate model because the old rates had essentially subsidized the small-ticket discounts.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Left 'speechless' as Sebelius overrules FDA on access to morning-after pill

The decision to leave in place a requirement that women younger than 17 get a prescription for the drug (the so-called “morning-after pill.”)was a huge surprise to liberal groups and advocates for the Plan B contraceptive, some of whom said they were left “speechless” by Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius’s involvement. - The Hill

It came a day after Sebelius traveled to Kansas on Air Force One with the president, but it is unclear whether the two discussed the decision. An administration official was not aware of any conversations about the pill between the two, and said the decision was Sebelius’s alone....

“We expected this kind of action from the Bush administration, so it’s doubly disheartening and unacceptable that this administration chose to follow this path,” NARAL Pro-Choice America said in a statement.

'The Trump Debate' Debate (UPDATED)

Sarah Palin endorses Donald Trump’s GOP debate, says Mitt Romney should participate - NY Daily News

Palin believes the criticism is unfounded, and that the debate will be a great platform for candidates to express their views.

"I think candidates should not be afraid in front of the nation no matter who the host of the debate is," Palin told the Fox Business Network on Wednesday night. "What is a bit appealing about this idea of Trump hosting a debate is, consider the diverse audience that perhaps he can attract...."

"America needs to wake up to what is going on under Obama's socialist policies and how he will bankrupt the country," she told Fox Business News. "I'm looking at the debate as a positive thing because of that fact."

ACU Endorses Trump Debate, Says GOP Candidates Should Attend - Newsmax

“This will be a serious debate focused on serious issues," Cardenas added. "Conservatives across the nation will appreciate a debate hosted by a trusted conservative media outlet like Newsmax that includes a spirited conversation with the candidates, led by Donald Trump, a crowd favorite among CPAC attendees.”

Read more on Newsmax.com: ACU Endorses Trump Debate, Says GOP Candidates Should Attend
Important: Do You Support Pres. Obama's Re-Election? Vote Here Now!

Perry, too, takes a pass on the Trump debate

So far, Republicans Mitt Romney, Jon Huntsman, and Ron Paul have said they will not participate. Paul’s campaign said Trump’s participation will contribute to a “circus-like atmosphere,” while a Huntsman spokesman emailed Business Insider that “We look forward to watching Mitt and Newt suck-up to The Donald with a big bowl of popcorn.” Romney, like Perry, said he will focus on hitting the campaign trail. Perry has had weak performances in several past debates.

Reince Priebus on Trump debate: 'Malpractice' not to think there’s problems Politico

“We appreciate what Mr. Trump has done, but if you’re still talking about potentially running as an independent candidate, I think that’s a problem,” Priebus said on Fox News. “I think that would be malpractice for me as an RNC chairman to not believe that that is an issue.”

Although Priebus repeated a previously made assertion that it was simply up to the candidates to “do whatever they want to do,” the RNC head repeated that Trump’s continued flirtation with a potential 2012 bid for the White House concerned him.

“I think that having a successful businessman serving as a moderator has a lot of value. But the issue here is whether the moderator should still be a person who’s still batting around the idea of running as an independent. I think that should give some of these candidates some concern,” he said.

Reince Priebus on the Trump debate. - Althouse

Tea Party Express Loves Trump Debate, Says GOP Candidates Must Attend - Newsmax

“Amy Kremer, Chairman of the Tea Party Express, said, ‘I hope all of the candidates will participate in this debate on the eve of the Iowa caucuses. Newsmax has been an indispensable part of the conservative media that keeps voters informed of the critical issues facing America. As the co-sponsor of the CNN/Tea Party Express Presidential Debate on September 12th in Tampa, Florida, we know the hard work that goes into a successful debate. We applaud Newsmax and Donald Trump for taking on this project for the sake of our country.’

“The debate is scheduled for Dec. 27 in Des Moines, Iowa. It will be available in 99 million homes throughout America on the ION Television network, and it also will be streamed on Newsmax.com.

“ ‘We are proud to join with Newsmax and other conservative organizations as a sponsor of this debate. Donald Trump has demonstrated his keen interest in restoring a responsible conservative to the White House, and his celebrity and commitment to conservative policies make him an ideal moderator for the debate.

Trump Debate: Hannity Says, 'I'll Be There' - Newsmax

Romney's Snub of Trump Debate Seals Fate in Florida - Newsmax

Dick Morris: Romney Must Attend Trump Debate - Newsmax

RESET GOES COLD


RESET GOES COLD - Putin slams Clinton for encouraging protesters - AP

MOSCOW (AP) — Prime Minister Vladimir Putin strongly criticized U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton on Thursday, accusing her of encouraging and funding Russians protesting election fraud, and warned of a wider Russian crackdown on dissent.

By describing Russia's parliamentary election as rigged, Putin said Clinton "gave a signal" to his opponents.

"They heard this signal and with the support of the U.S. State Department began their active work," Putin said in televised remarks. He said the United States is spending "hundreds of millions" of dollars to influence Russian politics with the aim of weakening a rival nuclear power.

Putin's tough words show the deep cracks in U.S.-Russian ties despite President Barack Obama's efforts to "reset" relations with the Kremlin.

Putin harks back to Cold War 20 years on - Asia one
Slams Clinton for encouraging protesters - Reuters
Clinton strikes back over missile threat - Bangkok Post

Never has Obama laid out as completely his disastrous vision for America. He has now articulated his socialist vision for our country. It won’t work. It is a recipe for national decay and dependency.

OBAMA’S KANSAS SPEECH: THE REBUTTAL - Dick Morris

On Tuesday, President Obama went to a small town in Kansas to lay out his basic campaign theme for the coming election: A commitment to “fairness.” In Obama’s America, we all are dependent on the government, closely regulated, heavily taxed…and poor. He boldly proclaims that “rugged individualism” doesn’t work and neither do tax cuts.

Instead, government management of the economy, heavy subsidies, and universal welfare is the key to economic health....

Never has Obama laid out as completely his disastrous vision for America. He has now articulated his socialist vision for our country. It won’t work. It is a recipe for national decay and dependency.

Nor will it work politically. In a recent Rasmussen Poll, voters agreed by 3:1 that they had more to fear from overreaching politicians than from greedy businessmen. A politics based on envy and class division just won’t fly in the United States. Obama’s got the wrong country.

Leaders of the resurrected radical group ACORN are lobbying the Obama administration in what appears to be a concerted effort to game the electoral system to help Democrats, new evidence suggests.

ACORN Visits Obama White House - Matthew Vadum/American Spectator

At least five Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now leaders have visited the White House this year alone. One of those ACORN officials has been involved in vetting Department of Justice hires who may help to enforce the voter fraud-enabling National Voting Rights Act (NVRA), also known as the Motor-Voter law. The Department has come under fire for refusing to enforce Section 8, which requires states to remove the names of ineligible felons, the dead, and non-residents from voter rolls, while zealously enforcing Section 7, which requires states to register voters at welfare offices....

The DOJ document dump also revealed that "civil rights groups" met with Associate Attorney General Thomas J. Perrelli on March 17, 2011 to discuss Section 7 of NVRA. The groups involved were Project Vote, American Association of People with Disabilities, Demos, League of Women Voters, Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, Brennan Center for Justice, Fair Elections Legal Network, NAACP Legal Defense Fund, and Paralyzed Veterans of America.

Rogers has been working with the Obama administration before it took office on Jan. 20, 2009. She filed what Project Vote called a "voting rights agenda" submission with the Obama-Biden presidential transition team in 2008.
It is now becoming clear what that agenda consists of. Project Vote and allied groups have filed a rash of lawsuits recently in several states in an attempt to pressure state officials into backing off investigations into voter fraud allegations, Kevin Mooney reported last week....

This is a story that has received far too little attention, but last month even the Justice Department Inspector General blasted ACORN and said a DoJ grant that went to ACORN was run fraudulently. - Quinn Hillyer/CFIF

Evidence of corruption at the Justice Department continues to mushroom – and, speaking of things one finds under trees, the corruption continues to ACORN as well.

Considering how controversial the vote-fraud mill known as ACORN was just a couple of years ago, it is remarkable how little attention has been generated by a November report of the Justice Department’s Inspector General. The IG analyzed a grant Justice made through the New York Agency for Community Affairs (NYACA) to be used by the ACORN Youth Union to recruit 216 new student activists.

But wait – as scandalous as it sounds that Justice was providing taxpayer dollars for ACORN recruitment (how does that goal have anything to do with justice?!?), the very fact of the grant’s existence is not the biggest outrage here. What’s worse is that what in very conception was already an outrageous grant was, in actual operation, completely misused even by its own pathetic standards.

Every single bit of it.

Forgive the lengthy quotation, but the weight of this full paragraph from the IG’s executive summary is astonishing (with my emphases added):
We reviewed NYACA’s compliance with seven essential grant requirements and determined that NYACA did not fully comply with the grant requirements we tested. Specifically, we found: (1) internal control weaknesses; (2) funding requests that resulted in excess cash on hand; (3) unsupported grant expenditures; (4) weaknesses in budget management and control; (5) lack of contractor monitoring; (6) inadequate grant reporting, including late and inaccurate reports; (7) award special conditions that were not met, including a requirement to notify OJP of any change in key personnel, a change in the project’s timeline, and a requirement to request prior OJP approval before using grant funds to support any law, regulation, or policy at any level of government; and (8) deficiencies with the program’s overall performance. Because of the deficiencies identified, we questioned $138,129, or 100 percent, of the grant funds NYACA expended.
...The conservative legal organization Judicial Watch, in an August report called “The Rebranding of ACORN,” has documented this ongoing deception that so obviously violates congressional intent. Conservatives are rightly furious that the Obama administration refuses to conduct a full-fledged criminal investigation into ACORN – and angry, too, that ACORN affiliates are demonstrably involved in the frequently lawless protests nationwide associated with Occupy Wall Street.

For the Obama team, liberal politics is by definition justice, and justice is by definition liberal politics – and the actual law be damned. When it comes to criminal organizations continuing to exist, that’s the, uh, nut of the situation.

STUDY: Voters Fleeing Both Major Parties; Especially Bad For Democrats


President Obama’s uphill battle to re-election is getting steeper. - WMAL

A report released Wednesday by the centrist think-tank Third Way showed that more than 825,000 voters in eight key battleground states have fled the Democratic Party since Obama won election in 2008.
“The numbers show that Democrats’ path to victory just got harder,” said Lanae Erickson, the report’s co-author. “We are seeing both an increase in independents and a decrease in Democrats and that means the coalition they have to assemble is going to rely even more on independents in 2012 than it did in 2008.”

Iowa Poll: Gingrich Best Prepared for President

Gingrich holds considerable advantages over his rivals. The poll found that he is winning support from 31 percent of likely caucus goers, who rate him as the most empathetic, the strongest commander in chief and best prepared for the job by a 2-to-1 ratio. Romney had the support of 17 percent and Paul 16 percent. - Newsmax

Game on in Iowa as GOP attacks target Gingrich - AP Yahoo

Hillary Campaign Conspicuously Emerges

Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign is still alive and today it emerged from the shadows to remind supporters that she "made history" in the 2008 campaign and that mementos from that bid are now for sale. - US News

In an E-mail, the Hillary Clinton for President campaign revived speculation that she is still interested in the Oval Office despite new denials that President Obama is considering replacing Vice President Joe Biden with his secretary of state. [Read Veep Fights: Clinton Vs. Bachmann.]

The E-mail comes as a new Washington Whispers poll finds that Clinton is the runaway favorite of those seeking a third party candidate. In our poll, 39 percent picked Clinton as their choice to head a third party. Mike Huckabee is next at 20 percent and Donald Trump dead last at 12 percent.

Some influential Democrats, however, want her to stick with Obama and get the vice presidency, believing that she will be able to bring back liberal, unions and environmental groups that are disappointed with the president.

Rick Perry: Strong


__________________
Rick Perry

Romney, an active man of faith

The Republican presidential candidate doesn't talk much about his role in the Mormon Church, but he served as a bishop in a Boston-area church and presided over 12 congregations as stake president. - Alana Semuels, Los Angeles Times

George W. Bush is a born-again Christian; President Obama has been a regular church-goer for decades; Jimmy Carter taught Sunday school. But no previous president or serious candidate can rival Romney for the time and energy spent in running a religious organization and ministering to its members.

Over the course of two decades, Romney served as spiritual and administrative leader for a Boston-area church and then as the head of a dozen Mormon churches....

Faith-based credentials such as Romney's are normally gold on the campaign trail. Yet Romney does not speak of his time as a church leader in Belmont. His Republican presidential campaign biography doesn't mention any of his church roles, not even his stint as Sunday school teacher.

"People in his campaign wished he'd never been a Mormon or a Mormon leader," said Ronald B. Scott, a fellow Mormon and the author of a just-published book about Romney, "Mitt Romney: An Inside Look at the Man and His Politics." "They haven't said, 'How do we turn this sow's ear into a silk purse?' And he doesn't talk about it."
__________________
Mitt Romney

Mitt Romney: Leader


__________________
Mitt Romney

An outbreak of fiscal sanity in California?

Four weeks after the news that the cost of California’s high-speed rail project has tripled since voters approved it, the struggling project is taking another hit: waning public support. - Ed Morrissey/HotAir

A new Field Poll shows that 64 percent of California voters would like a ballot measure giving them a chance to reconsider their 2008 decision to approve $9 billion in state bonds for the project.

Fifty-nine percent said they would reject the $98.5 billion project if it were put before them again. In 2008, 52.6 percent of voters approved plans for the rail line to connect San Francisco and Sacramento with Los Angeles.

Poll: 59% Do Not Want California’s High-Speed Rail Project - Jammie Wearing Fools

This makes plenty of sense considering the state is in dire shape, they don’t have the money and this boondoggle would cost over $100 billion that they simply do not have.

“The Field Poll confirmed what I already had come to believe: The public patience for this project is about exhausted,” said state Sen. Mark DeSaulnier, D-Concord, chairman of the Senate Transportation Committee.

DeSaulnier said he has long supported the bullet train service as a way to fight congestion and greenhouse gases.

But he said Tuesday that he could turn against the project unless the California High Speed Rail Authority soon can answer questions about spiraling costs and uncertainty over federal and private funding for the project.

“I think it’s time to fish or cut bait with this project,” he said. “It may be too late.”

Poll casts cloud over high-speed rail project - Contra Costa Times

Sherry Bebitch Jeffe, a USC political scholar, said the struggling economy has made it a hard time to begin expensive public works projects -- especially when federal and private funding for the project is unclear.
"Voters are uncomfortable with large-scale expensive projects," Bebitch Jeffe said.

Newt: I’ll appoint John Bolton as Secretary of State

“If he will accept it, I will appoint John Bolton as Secretary of State.” - Le·gal In·sur·rec·tion
__________________
Newt Gingrich

Still a bit better than his mid-October rating of 39/54, but hardly the kind of number that the White House would have expected after last Friday’s jobless report, which they tried to spin as progress

Obama disapproval back over 50% in Gallup tracking poll - HotAir

So far, the class-warfare strategy doesn’t appear to be paying dividends. Obama gave the joint-session speech that launched his soak-the-rich theme on September 8, and his Gallup rating in the tracking poll at that time was 43/48. He managed to narrow that to 45/47 in mid-November, but for most of that time his disapproval has gone up, not down. When the gap has narrowed, it’s been more from lower disapproval than gains in approval, which has only gotten as high as 45% once in the past three months in this series.

Republicans might have worried that their lively primary fight might raise Obama’s stature ahead of the general election. So far, that doesn’t appear to be a problem.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Remembering Pearl Harbor: 70 years


Five memorials will be held today for “servicemen who lived through the assault and want their remains placed in Pearl Harbor out of pride and affinity for those they left behind.” - Michelle Malkin

God bless our veterans and their families.

"Fore" More Years?

ROMNEY CAMP USES OBAMA GOLF TO RAISE CASH - 'Donate $18 to send Obama on a permanent vacation'

UPDATE: Obama Cancels Holiday Trip After Romney Hit, won't go to Hawaii while payroll tax is in limbo - The Hill

Documents: ATF used "Fast and Furious" to make the case for gun regulations

Documents obtained by CBS News show that the Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) discussed using their covert operation "Fast and Furious" to argue for controversial new rules about gun sales. - CBS News

In Fast and Furious, ATF secretly encouraged gun dealers to sell to suspected traffickers for Mexican drug cartels to go after the "big fish." But ATF whistleblowers told CBS News and Congress it was a dangerous practice called "gunwalking," and it put thousands of weapons on the street. Many were used in violent crimes in Mexico. Two were found at the murder scene of a U.S. Border Patrol agent.

ATF officials didn't intend to publicly disclose their own role in letting Mexican cartels obtain the weapons, but emails show they discussed using the sales, including sales encouraged by ATF, to justify a new gun regulation called "Demand Letter 3". That would require some U.S. gun shops to report the sale of multiple rifles or "long guns." Demand Letter 3 was so named because it would be the third ATF program demanding gun dealers report tracing information.

On July 14, 2010 after ATF headquarters in Washington D.C. received an update on Fast and Furious, ATF Field Ops Assistant Director Mark Chait emailed Bill Newell, ATF's Phoenix Special Agent in Charge of Fast and Furious:

"Bill - can you see if these guns were all purchased from the same (licensed gun dealer) and at one time. We are looking at anecdotal cases to support a demand letter on long gun multiple sales. Thanks." ...MORE

Focus on Agenda 21 Should Not Divert Attention from Homegrown Anti-Growth Policies

Agenda 21, a voluntary action plan adopted by various nations after the U.N. Conference on Environment and Development in Rio in 1992, advocates changes similar to those of smart-growth advocates. - Heritage.Org

Radical environmentalists, local business groups, and the ever-present Not in My Backyard crowd have been trying for decades to reshape American communities to conform to their preferred “smart growth” policies. These advocates work to impose land use regulations that would force Americans into denser living arrangements, curtail freedom of choice in housing, discriminate against lower-income Americans, and compel people to pay more for their houses and give up their cars in favor of subways, trolleys, buses, and bicycles.

These efforts—often described as “New Urbanism,” “sustainable development,” or “open land preservation”—have long been resisted by some members of the community due to their negative impact on economic growth, competitiveness, and the nation’s standard of living. As Heritage has documented, communities implementing smart-growth policies have significantly higher home prices, which precludes moderate-income households from homeownership. In turn, these high home prices have forced buyers to take on excessive levels of mortgage debt, which has contributed to the default and foreclosure problems that have led to the current recession. Indeed, the foreclosure problem is at its worst in states with the strictest land use constraints: Florida, California, Arizona, and Nevada.

In recent years, however, many smart-growth opponents working at the local level have shifted their focus toward opposing the 1992 United Nations voluntary initiative called Agenda 21, which advocates many policies that reflect smart-growth principles. They should recognize that Agenda 21 is simply another facet of smart growth and not allow it to divert them from opposing the more ubiquitous, overarching agenda of homegrown environmental extremists. Learn MORE...

Oh, Dear: Evidence Mounts That Obama's Campaign Falsified Signature, Cheated His Way On To The 2008 Indiana Primary Ballot

The allegations that election fraud touched a race for the highest office in the land are at the center of an investigation by St. Joseph County Attorney Michael Dvorak. He would not comment, but sources say the probe is gaining steam as prosecutors delve into the petitions that sailed through the St. Joseph County Voter Registration Board, located in South Bend. There have been reports that as many as seven people may have been involved in an alleged conspiracy to fake the petitions. - Ace of Spades

"I had always thought that, now-President Obama, had earned his victory in Indiana," said the state's Republican chairman, Eric Holcomb. "But then I quickly learned that he had cheated his way on to the ballot in the primary."

Indiana 2008 Presidential Primary Election Fraud Probe Heats Up (Video) - FOX

Charity Rorie, a mother of four, sat in her Mishawaka, Ind., kitchen, stunned that her name appeared on a 2008 Democratic presidential primary petition for then-candidate Barack Obama.

"That's not my signature," she told Fox News, saying her signature is "absolutely" a fake. She also said she was troubled someone forged both her signature and that of her husband, Jeff, and listed personal details such as their address and birthdays....

Did Obama get on the Indiana ballot in the 2008 primaries due to forged signatures? - Neoneocon

The Russian Post-Election Situation and Its Political and Policy Implications


A distinguished group of experts evaluates the outcome of the December 6 parliamentary elections in Russia and their implications for U.S.-Russia relations - Heritage

DEMOCRATS TURN AGAINST ISRAEL...

Israel rift roils Democratic ranks - Politico via Drudge

Two of the Democratic Party’s core institutions are challenging a bipartisan consensus on Israel and Palestine that has dominated American foreign policy for more than a decade.

The Center for American Progress *, the party’s key hub of ideas and strategy, and Media Matters, a central messaging organization, have emerged as vocal critics of their party’s staunchly pro-Israel congressional leadership and have been at odds, at times, with Barack Obama’s White House, which has acted as a reluctant ally to Benjamin Netanyahu’s Israeli government.

* Created by the Democratic National Committee, developed by a secret White House brain trust, and initially funded by the George Soros / Herb Sandler / Hillary Clinton money lists, the Center for American Progress is an echo chamber for the Democratic Party and left-wing politics in general. A favorite source of NPR (National Public Radio) stories.

The Republican Party has launched a war on women, Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) said Tuesday

EMILY's List donors hear of Republican Party's 'war on women' - The Hill

The Republican Party has launched a war on women, Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) said Tuesday, flanked by five of her female Senate colleagues at a fundraiser for Democratic female candidates.

Republican efforts to curtail family planning and infertility treatment, and to repeal clean air regulations that protect pregnant women and others, have created a dire need for a stronger voice in the Senate representing women's needs, Boxer told donors for EMILY's List, a PAC that supports Democratic women who favor abortion rights.

...At her side were major forces in the Democratic party and female senators up for reelection in 2012, including Sens. Debbie Stabenow (Mich.), Maria Cantwell (Wash.), Amy Klobuchar (Minn.), Claire McCaskill (Mo.) and Kirsten Gillibrand (N.Y.). Sen. Charles Schumer (N.Y.), the No. 3 Democrat in the Senate, also made an appearance.
__________________

Barbara Boxer (D)
Hart Senate Office Building
Room 112
Washington, D.C. 20510
Phone: (202) 224-3553
San Francisco: (415) 403-0100 Fax: (415) 956-6701
http://boxer.senate.gov/ (Email contact via webform)

You can contact each of the representatives listed in the article by clicking on their names.

Has a War With Iran Already Begun?

Violent incidents between Iran and the West have been increasing - The Atlantic

Two incidents that occurred on Sunday--Iran's claim of a shoot-down of a U.S. drone, and an explosion outside the British embassy in Bahrain--may have been unrelated. But they appear to add to growing evidence that an escalating covert war by the West is under way against Iran, and that Tehran is retaliating with greater intensity than ever.

Asked whether the United States, in cooperation with Israel, was now engaged in a covert war against Iran's nuclear program that may include the Stuxnet virus, the blowing-up of facilities and the assassination or kidnapping of scientists, one recently retired U.S. official privy to up-to-date intelligence would not deny it.

U.S. Military Sources: Iran Has Missing U.S. Drone - FOX

George Orwell on the Evil Iranian Menace - Glenn Greenwald/Salon

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Teddy Roosevelt Tweet of the Day


Le·gal In·sur·rec·tion via: ◼ Iowahawk on Twitter

“Silence is consent”



Israel's very existence is threatened and the current administration continues to treat it and its Prime Minister not as close allies but as insignificant. Now, Brad Sherman and Howard Berman, my two opponents in the upcoming primary for California's 30th District Congressional seat, are both quietly distancing themselves from the very same person they helped elect -- only to get themselves re-elected!

I'm not challenging their support for, or emotional connection to, Israel; however, I want you to take a serious look at their silence concerning the Middle East and the State of Israel, our only true friend in the region. I would speak loudly and clearly in opposition... Mark Reed ◼ http://www.markreedforcongress.com/

(Mark) Reed has come out with a powerful video ad which is reminisent of LBJ’s Daisy commercial. The ad and the point about silence is all the more powerful because Reed is running against two Jewish congressmen. - Le·gal In·sur·rec·tion

Snared in the Soros Web

It turns out that many of the sources I use for research are connected to George Soros‘ money. Here are a few I dug up and there are many more that are not listed here: - Terresa Monroe-Hamilton at Trevor Loudon and ◼ Noisy Room
sorosfiles.com/soros/

Politico Notes “Landscape Has Changed” on Government Spending in 12 Months Since GOP House Takeover

Posted by Speaker Boehner's Press Office

In a piece appearing in ◼ Politico, veteran reporter David Rogers notes the new Republican majority in the House has followed through on its promise to pull federal discretionary spending back to 2008 levels, observing that some “seem blind to how much the landscape has changed in the past 12 months” as a result of congressional Republicans’ fight to stop the spending binge in still-Democratic-controlled Washington. Rogers credits the GOP majority with ensuring that “President Barack Obama will go into the last year of his first term with no more purchasing power in many cases than his predecessor four years before” – matching one of the central goals of ◼ the Pledge to America, which sought to return annual federal spending to pre-Obama levels.

“Total discretionary spending will be down for a second year — counting emergency money or not,” Rogers writes. “A year ago when [Speaker] Boehner was just being sworn in as speaker, the Congressional Budget Office pegged non-emergency discretionary spending at $1.091 trillion, with almost half or $508.7 billion for the Pentagon. The deal now being negotiated by House and Senate Appropriations cuts $48 billion from that total even as the Pentagon goes up to $518 billion — meaning the rest of the government will get a real cut of $58 billion or 10 percent of discretionary spending as of a year ago. This. . .comes very close to rolling back non-defense appropriations to the last year of the Bush administration.”

“Those 2008 numbers were dictated by another pre-Christmas deal almost exactly four years ago between what was then a Democratic Congress and Republican president,” Rogers writes. “Two thirds of the $110 billion increase since then is owed to the Pentagon budget and veterans spending. If all the remaining domestic programs are lumped together with foreign aid and homeland security, the proposed spending levels for 2012 — $454 billion — are virtually the same as 2008 when adjusted for inflation.” (emphasis added)

“That means President Barack Obama will go into the last year of his first term with no more purchasing power in many cases than his predecessor four years before — and $55 billion less than Obama requested for the same accounts in his own 2012 budget last February,” Rogers writes.

Republicans have consistently warned that the ongoing government spending binge in Washington is a threat to American job creation. As promised in the Pledge, Republicans in the new House majority have worked all year to pass bills that would remove government barriers to private-sector job creation, while also working to rein in federal spending. Congressional Republicans confronted President Obama over his desire to increase the federal debt ceiling without corresponding spending cuts, with Speaker Boehner vowing that the House would not approve any debt limit increase that was not accompanied by larger cuts in government spending. The result was enactment of the Budget Control Act, which placed strict spending caps on federal spending over the next decade – limits that will hold back the growth of government over the next 10 years and give our nation’s economy a chance to grow and create jobs.

Union Bosses Win, Ohio Workers Get Fired

One month ago Ohio voted with its heart against reforms portrayed as an attack on public workers. - Jason Hart/Breitbart's Big Government

Ohio, DC, and New York union bosses spent more than $30 million drenching the airwaves in images of sad firefighters, sad police officers, and evil Republicans, convincing voters to overlook a broken status quo.

A month later, how are local governments celebrating the union victory on Issue 2?
Middletown is laying off 9 firefighters, despite the city’s police and fire budgets both increasing by nearly 1/3 in the past decade....

Cleveland City School District is eliminating preschool, high school busing, and 75 security positions...

Westerville City School District is firing 62 support staff, cutting busing, and eliminating all sports...

One of Lancaster’s three city firehouses was closed last month after the mayor laid off 13 firefighters to help balance the budget. The 68 firefighters remaining have predicted response times will increase in the city of about 37,000, but they could not say by how much....
The unions made this bed, and Ohio voters were gullible enough to climb into it.

◼ COMPARE THAT TO WISCONSIN: Saving Money in Wisconsin

Mitt Romney Announces He Won’t Be Participating In Trump Moderated Debate

Former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney is the latest GOP presidential hopeful to announce he will not be participating in the December 27th debate schedule to be moderated by Donald Trump. - Mediaite
Oh my: I’m skipping the Trump debate, says Romney - HotAir

This is, however, a bona fide risk, no matter how freakish the debate might be: The Trump event is set for December 27, just a week before the caucuses, and it’ll probably do major ratings thanks to Trump’s star appeal. As such, it’s a last chance for Newt to close the deal with Iowans or for Perry or Bachmann to gain traction and vault past Romney, which would be ruinous to his campaign heading into New Hampshire.

Rick Santorum on Moderators: Trump Wouldn't Be Any Worse 'Than What We Get from the Mainstream Media' - Noel Sheppard/Newsbusters

Michele Bachmann: Join in tele-town hall!


Will you join me tonight for a special tele-town hall meeting?

Are you free to talk tonight? I'd like to speak with you at 8:20pm EST about our campaign for president along with the urgent issues facing our country: the unemployment crisis, immigration enforcement, creating American jobs, just to name a few. Register for tonight's tele-townhall exclusively for my supporters by clicking on the link (here).
__________________
Michele Bachmann

Q: Who was the last person to actually cut government? A: Newt.

Congresswoman Jenkins Reacts to the President's Remarks in Osawatomie



Obama sets campaign theme: Middle class at stake - AP

Obama "said that he is like Teddy Roosevelt," Romney said at a campaign event in Paradise Valley, Ariz. "And I thought, `In what way is he like Teddy Roosevelt?' Teddy Roosevelt of course founded the Bull Moose Party. One of those words applies."

Kirsten Kukowski, spokeswoman for the Republican National Committee, said, "Maybe instead of trying to be like other presidents, Obama should try being president."

BECK DOESN’T HOLD BACK IN GINGRICH INTERVIEW: TOUGH QUESTIONS ON MANDATES, BIG GOV’T, & GLOBAL WARMING

Video and transcript at the link - The Blaze

Conservative activist Phyllis Schlafly endorses Michele Bachmann

Social conservative Phyllis Schlafly has endorsed Michele Bachmann for president and is urging Iowans to caucus for her - Jennifer Jacobs/Des Moines Register

In a written statement, Schlafly says: “Most important, Michele has the courage to be a leader among her peers. She is a real champion in speaking up for values we care about. Michele is a woman of faith and the mother of a beautiful family. She has a 100 percent pro-life record and is a strong supporter of traditional marriage.”

Schlafly became a national leader in the conservative movement in the 1960s. In 2000, she campaigned in Iowa for Republican Steve Forbes.

In the statement, Schlafly pumps up Iowa’s first-in-the-nation caucuses.

“If I were an Iowa voter, I would be making plans right now to cast my vote for Michele Bachmann for president on January 3. I hope you will take advantage of this golden opportunity to support a candidate we can all be proud of.”

Schlafly said conservatives don’t want the media to choose their candidate, “or tell us we must choose one of the two who currently lead in the polls.”
__________________
Michele Bachmann