Tags: Viguerie | obama | schumer

Viguerie: Republican Leaders Must Resign

Monday, 19 May 2008 07:46 AM

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Headlines:
1. Viguerie: Republican Leaders Must Resign
2. Press Cuts Obama Slack for '57 States' Remark
3. Bennett, Lieberman Applaud Hillary’s New Voice
4. Wall Street Journal: Public Unions Bill a ‘Doozy’
5. Schumer Shaking Down Fellow Democrats for Cash
6. 9/11 Memorial $5 Million Short
7. We Heard: Rush Limbaugh, Jon Voight, Michael Moore

1. Viguerie: Republican Leaders Must Resign

The Republican Party must replace its leadership or conservatives will continue to withhold support and the GOP will face “disaster” in November, leading conservative activist Richard A. Viguerie declared.

“Republican Party leaders must resign,” said Viguerie, publisher of ConservativeHQ.com and the pioneer of political direct mail.

“Leaders in the White House, the Congress, and the Republican National Committee and its affiliates, along with most Republican leaders at the state level, have failed — or outright betrayed — the conservative voters who put them in their

positions.

“The result is that the Republican Party’s brand has become a negative to an extent greater than in the Watergate era, perhaps even worse than in the days of Herbert Hoover.”

Viguerie made these points:

  • The number of new Republican voters is flat while Democratic voter registration is soaring.

  • Contributions to Republican candidates and committees are way off, while donations to Democrats are "setting records."

  • In this year’s primaries, votes for GOP candidates at all levels are running far behind the Democrats.

  • In recent special elections, Republicans lost House seats in Illinois, Louisiana, and Mississippi that had long been in GOP hands — all in districts carried overwhelmingly by President Bush. A single election can be a fluke, but when Republicans lose three seemingly safe seats in a row, “disaster is looming.”

“The hard work of the last 50 years by millions of conservative campaign workers, donors, candidates, writers, intellectuals, and activists has been trashed,” he said.

“The conservative movement has been set back 10 to 20 years — possibly even permanently — by politicians

consumed by power.”

He named a number of prominent Republicans, including President Bush, Karl Rove, party chairman Mike Duncan, House Minority Leader John Boehner, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, former Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott, and House Minority Whip Roy Blunt.

“Some deserve more of the blame than others, but they are all part of an establishment that has brought the Republican Party down,” added Viguerie, whose latest book is “Conservatives Betrayed: How George W. Bush and Other Big-Government Republicans Hijacked the Conservative Cause.”

“For things to change, for conservatives to be justified in once again giving our contributions, our volunteer efforts, our energy, and votes to the GOP, the party must clean house. The party leadership should resign immediately.

“Republicans are doomed to wander in the political wilderness until this generation of weak-kneed, no-vision, inarticulate, afraid-of-the-liberal-media politicians are replaced with principled conservatives in the mold of Bill Buckley, Barry Goldwater, and Ronald Reagan.”

Viguerie has this message for the current GOP leadership: “For the future of the Republican Party, for America, and the cause of freedom: Go!”

2. Press Cuts Obama Slack for ’57 States’ Remark

Many in the media were quick to dismiss Barack Obama’s reference to “57 states” in the U.S. as simply a sign of fatigue — in sharp contrast to the way the press ridiculed Republican Dan Quayle’s gaffes.

During a recent campaign stop in Oregon, the Democratic presidential candidate said: “Over the past 15 months, we’ve traveled to every corner of the United States. I’ve now been in 57 states. I think one left to go. Alaska and Hawaii I was not allowed to go to, even though I really wanted to visit, but my staff would not justify it.”

Andrew Malcolm noted in the Los Angeles Times: “The respected Marc Ambinder at The Atlantic anticipated that the political media would kindly write the Democrat's misstatement off to fatigue.”

In fact, Ambinder said: "Obama is tired, nothing more."

The L.A. Times reported in another article that “Obama's made several rookie mistakes, most recently departing from his text to announce that he's now campaigned in all 57 states. Minor slips, to be sure. Fatigue probably.”

And John Stephenson wrote on the NewsBusters blog site: “I'm going to be generous and chalk this gaffe up to exhaustion, because it is difficult for me to fathom that someone who wants to be the president of the United States could actually be this stupid.”

He added: “But if John McCain did this — if he mistakenly said he’d visited 57 states — the media would be all up in his grill, accusing him of a senior moment.”

Indeed, the press treated Dan Quayle roughly for his various misstatements, ridiculing him mercilessly when he made comments such as: “I love California. I practically grew up in Phoenix.”

The then vice president’s most famous blunder came when he “corrected” a student’s spelling of “potato” at an elementary school spelling bee in Trenton, N.J., in June 1992, saying the proper spelling was “potatoe.”

3. Bennett, Lieberman Applaud Hillary’s New Voice

Appearing on conservative radio-talker Bill Bennett’s show on Wednesday, Sen. Joe Lieberman agreed with Bennett’s assertion that Bill Clinton is now in the “background” of Hillary’s campaign and she has found her “voice.”

Discussing Hillary’s resounding victory in the West Virginia primary the previous day, Bennett said: “I give her credit . . . She’s found her voice. He is very much in the background now. It’s not this ventriloquial thing, it’s definitely her voice.”

Lieberman said: “That’s true.”

Bennett continued: “And Joe, this is my style. This is a girl who puts on her pearls, goes down, throws down a shot of liquor and bombs Iran, you know. This is . . . lookout Mrs. Bennett, this is my kind of girl.”

Lieberman chuckled: “It does have an appeal to it.”

Lieberman has made no secret of his willingness to bomb Iran, according to the liberal Web site Think Progress, which reported the exchange — although it’s not clear the “appeal” was to bombing Iran.

However, as long ago as April 2006 Lieberman said he would back a U.S. airstrike on Iran's nuclear facilities if diplomatic options fail.

And as Newsmax reported this past February, he said Iran must be reckoned with "before it is too late."

4. Wall Street Journal: Public Unions Bill a ‘Doozy’

Democrats in Congress are pushing a bill that would require hundreds of thousands of local police and firefighters to submit to collective bargaining.

The bill, which overwhelmingly passed the House last year, would make top officials at local unions the exclusive agents to bargain for pay, benefits, and work rules for police and other public safety officers in every U.S. locality with more than 5,000 people.

The goal “is to give labor the whip hand with local governments, and further coerce nonunion members to join the dues-paying ranks,” an editorial in The Wall Street Journal stated.

The bill, being promoted strenuously by the International Association of Fire Fighters, is “a doozy,” according to the

Journal. “Unions that organize private companies are at least subject to market competition. If they make their employers uncompetitive, the union workers lose their jobs.

“Public unions have far more clout because there is no competition for government services; they are by law a monopoly.”

This clout can drive up costs and increase the tax burden. And public safety officers can do great harm if they go on strike.

The bill does contain a ban on strikes. But the Journal notes that similar provisions have failed in the past — unions call strikes anyway, then negotiate amnesty as a condition of ending the work stoppage.

The Bush administration has vowed to veto the bill. But the House passed it by a veto-proof margin of 314 to 97, and the legislation has 11 Republican co-sponsors in the Senate.

Arguing against the bill, the Journal declares that it would “complicate the task of post-9/11 public security. Federal emergency plans rely on the cooperation of local ‘first-responders,’ who need the flexibility to adapt to local problems and circumstances. Work rules negotiated according to national union standards make no sense when the safety needs of New York City are so much different than those in Fargo.”

Sen. Jim DeMint, a South Carolina Republican, said on Monday that he planned to offer amendments to the bill that would protect workers from being forced to pay union dues and to protect workers’ right to a secret ballot in union elections.

He said in a statement: “While American families are facing an uncertain economy, Democrats are shamefully pushing another job-killing bill to help line the pockets of organized labor.

“Let’s be honest: This bill is a political payoff to big labor bosses, whose political support is needed to keep Democrats in charge of Congress. We should be protecting workers’ rights, not taking them away.”

5. Schumer Shaking Down Fellow Democrats for Cash

Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee Chairman Charles Schumer is having solid success in convincing fellow Senate Democrats to contribute to the committee as the party seeks to win a filibuster-proof majority in November.

At the urging of the New York senator, 33 of the Senate’s 51 Democrats contributed a total of more than $840,000 to the DSCC in the first quarter of 2008, raising the fundraising group’s overall take to nearly $17 million.

The money came from the senators’ re-election funds, personal accounts, and political action committee accounts, according to Roll Call.

Schumer said Democrats “feel the wind at their backs but also feel a sense of urgency because Republicans are blocking everything and we need change.”

Sen. Debbie Stabenow of Michigan, who recently gave the DSCC $15,000, agreed, telling Roll Call: “People are feeling very confident, but we’re also feeling a great sense of urgency about eliminating the roadblocks of the filibuster and getting to 60 votes.”

The largest contributors to the DSCC through March 31 were Sen. Ron Wyden of Oregon, who gave $115,000, and Mark Pryor of Arkansas, with a $100,000 donation.

Freshman Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse of Rhode Island, another contributor, said Schumer “is pretty convincing when he applies the powers of persuasion.”

Neither Hillary Clinton nor Barack Obama has made a donation to the DSCC this year.

Overall, Democrats have raised $72.3 million this election cycle, while the National Republican Senatorial Committee has pulled in just $43.5 million, Roll Call reports.

Adding to the GOP’s woes, 23 Republican-held seats are in play this November, compared to only 12 for the Democrats.

6. 9/11 Memorial $5 Million Short

A memorial to the 184 people who died when terrorists crashed a plane into the Pentagon on 9/11 is scheduled to open in September — but funding remains
$5 million short.

President Bush will preside at the ceremony marking the official opening of the memorial on Sept. 11.

The 1.93-acre memorial — 165 feet from the site where American Airlines Flight 77 crashed into the Pentagon — will consist of 184 stainless steel benches, each bearing the name of a victim and cantilevered over a small pool of water.

The Pentagon Memorial Fund Executive Committee includes such figures as former FBI and CIA Director William H. Webster, and two former chairmen of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Richard B. Myers and H. Hugh Shelton.

The committee has raised $17 million, but needs another $5 million to complete the memorial. Another $10

million endowment is needed to maintain the site.

Donations can be made by calling 202-237-0327 or by sending a check to Pentagon Memorial Fund Inc., 5185 MacArthur Boulevard NW, Suite 115, Washington, D.C. 20016.

Donations can also be made by visiting the Web site www.pentagonmemorial.org.

7. We Heard . . .

THAT leading radio talker Rush Limbaugh alluded to his “Operation Chaos” and John McCain’s liberal leanings when he delivered a jibe at the presumptive Republican presidential nominee.

“One of my next objectives is to try and convince Republicans to cross over and vote for McCain down the road,” Limbaugh told The Politico’s Jonathan Martin.

Limbaugh’s Operation Chaos has urged conservative listeners to cross over and vote for the trailing Democrat in order to prolong the battle for the party’s presidential nomination.

Rush told Martin his campaign has “worked like a charm . . . My audience loved it, they participated in it, they had fun with it, as did I.”

Limbaugh has been sharply critical of McCain for being too liberal for conservatives’ taste.

THAT Oscar-winning actor Jon Voight will be honored with an award at an upcoming international gathering of biblical scholars.

The World Conference of the Noahide Nations, to be held in Ft. Lauderdale, Fla., on June 26-29, will offer workshops and symposiums led by Jewish and non-Jewish scholars in the field of Torah study.

Conference organizer Ray Pettersen said Voight will receive the Zedekah Award for his lifelong charitable work.

Voight, Pettersen declared, “has taken a very vocal stand for the moral truths that make a nation strong.”

Pettersen also cited Voight’s participation in a recent fundraiser to aid the bombing victims in Sederot, Israel.

THAT documentary filmmaker Michael Moore will pocket $20 million up front for his sequel to “Fahrenheit 9/11” — a movie that will cost only about $7 million to make.

That means Moore will rake in some $13 million from backers Paramount Vantage and Overture Films even if the documentary is a box office bomb, the New York Post reports.

“Fahrenheit 9/11,” which was sharply critical of the U.S. invasion of Iraq, grossed $219 million worldwide, a record for a documentary. But his most recent film “Sicko,” which attacked the American health care system, brought in only $36 million.

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