Thursday, January 28, 2010

Foreign Influence in American Elections

Zero is suddenly concerned about "foreign influence" in American elections. Maybe someone should investigate Jodie Evans and track all the money she "bundled" during the Presidential campaign. (Someone should investigate code pink, period.)

The louder the dhimmis holler about something, the more likely it is that they are guilty of doing that very thing.

Background here, here, and here.

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Former SEAL Scott Taylor Candidate VA-02

Scott Taylor Responds to President Obama's State of the Union Address

Congratulations to our Governor Bob Mcdonnell for delivering an eloquent Republican rebuttal to the President's State of The Union address last night.

I agree with President Obama's assessment that the national debt and diminishing jobs are critical problems we now face. When the President took office the unemployment rate was 7.7 percent. One year and $1.4 trillion dollars spent later, the unemployment rate stands at 10 percent and 3.4 million more jobs have been lost.

I believe freezing spending is a step in the right direction, however, Obama's spending freeze would apply to a narrow portion of spending ( around 1/8th of total spending). What is more disturbing is the fact that his freeze exempts the three entitlement programs (Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security) that are bankrupting this nation. We are on an unsustainable path that threatens our future.

Despite overwhelming public opposition, the President restated his commitment to a flawed health care reform being forced on to Americans. I will never support a bill that gives un-Constitutional mandates for health care coverage.

I was pleased when I heard President Obama talking of building new nuclear power plants and drilling offshore, but was saddened when he talked of his support for the Cap and Tax bill (he referred to it as the "climate bill"). We have to take the handcuffs off our own natural resources. That means safely exploring and drilling off the coast of Virginia. I will fight for royalties of at least 37.5%; which the 4 gulf states now enjoy. If we are serious about building new nuclear power plants as China, India, and Russia have already planned; we must reduce regulations and expedite permits.

Also very concerning was that 40 minutes into the speech and for only 10 sentences the President mentioned Terrorism. We are in a time when Guantanamo Bay is being shut down, enemy combatants are receiving civilian rights, and tax dollars are being spent defending terrorists at trial. The President's 10 year budget plan would dramatically cut defense spending in real terms and as a percentage of the economy. We need to ensure the funding and constant innovating of our military to combat ever changing threats. It's much easier and cheaper to "keep up, than to catch up".

I look forward to campaigning on the principles that have made this nation the best experiment in democracy. The best is yet to come.

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Statement From Dan Lungren, R-Calif on CU vs FEC

Video of Justice Alito during the SOTU disagreeing with The Chosen One.

WASHINGTON – Today, the Committee on House Administration’s Ranking Republican Dan Lungren, R-Calif., issued the following statement on the President’s false assumption that the recent United States Supreme Court ruling in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission will open the floodgates for foreign spending in U.S. elections:

“Justice Alito is correct. The assumption that the Court’s recent decision will open the floodgates for foreign spending in U.S. elections is simply not true. Since the Court’s decision to overturn unconstitutional restrictions on free speech, there has been a substantial amount of misinformation disseminated by Democrats in an attempt to scare the American electorate into supporting their attempts to stifle political speech.

“It’s time to set the record straight. The Court’s decision did not – in any way, shape or form – impact existing rules and regulations that specifically prohibit foreign nationals from directly or indirectly contributing to election activity. The legal prohibitions on foreign involvement in U.S. elections are broad, clear and completely intact.

“Instead of spreading misinformation in the hopes of silencing political free speech, Democrats should focus on solving the real problems plaguing American families.”

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Heritage Morning Bell-SOTU

A Speech Only Washington Could Love
The more things change, the more things stay the same. A little over a year ago, President Barack Obama came to office expecting to pass a "big bang" of policy changes all in the first year: health care, cap-and-trade, and banking regulation. With the big-bang strategy officially a failure, President Obama's State of the Union address last night desperately tried to keep all of these legislative efforts alive while also acknowledging that the country has firmly rejected his policy agenda.

The result was an incoherent mess of promised tax cuts for small businesses coupled with the threat of tax hikes from his health care and energy proposals; more federal money to encourage banks to lend to businesses, coupled with new taxes on banks and individuals; the continued waste of his $862 billion stimulus plan and $2 trillion in new health care spending, coupled with a delayed and temporary spending freeze. As one of the longest State of the Unions in the past 45 years, we cannot cover everything here. But our crack team of Heritage experts did hit almost every issue last night, and you can read their full reactions here.

Highlights include:

The New Hire Tax Credit
The tax credit for new hires is another recycled idea from Washington. Last tried in the 1970s, the tax credit proved to be a windfall for big businesses that were planning to hire anyway. Small businesses, the engine of job growth, did not use the tax credit largely because they were unaware of it and did not understand how to take advantage of the credit. The jobs tax credit proposal will likely also delay hiring since businesses that understand the tax credit now face an incentive to postpone hiring decisions to take advantage of the tax credit. Extending the Bush tax cuts and undoing the heavy taxes in the health care legislation is a better step to job creation than this tax credit.

The Bank Tax
President Obama tonight called for a new tax on banks and other large financial institutions, “a modest fee,” he said, “to pay back the taxpayers who rescued them in their time of need.” That sounds great, but in truth, the new tax would do nothing of the kind. Mr. Obama knows that almost every major bank has paid-back their bailout funds, with interest. Taxpayers made substantial profits on those repayments. On the other hand, most of the companies that still owe billions to taxpayers, including Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, and auto firms GM and Chrysler, would not be subject to the tax. In short, Mr. Obama would tax those that have paid back taxpayers and exempt those who have not.

The Spending Freeze
Obama’s spending freeze would apply to a narrow sliver of spending (somewhere around 1/8th of total spending) and at best, savings would be less than one percent of the total budget. Moreover, it explicitly exempts the very entitlement programs driving future deficits. At a time when the deficit is $1.4 trillion and we face a sea of even worse red ink as far as the eye can see, such a freeze is tantamount to bailing out – forgive the double entendre – the Titanic with a dixiecup. And it would start next year, conveniently after the elections. Freezing spending is the right idea, but this freeze falls short of real action.

Energy Production
His calls for new nuclear power, offshore oil and gas exploration, and other new energy technologies are certainly welcome. The problem is that his program of subsidies, special tax treatment, and government support will not work. While government programs can create jobs in specific sectors, the President ignores the evidence that these programs end up killing more jobs than they create. Spain has already gone down this road, and its experience should give the President caution. Between 2000 and 2008, the Spanish government spent $36 billion in taxpayers' money on wind, solar and mini-hydro development. Each green job created cost on average $758,471.

Foreign Policy
Many around the world have expressed concern that a U.S. administration so focused on domestic priorities and troubles as the current one will be too inward-looking to be deeply engaged in the world. Judging by its placement in his list of priorities, foreign affairs did seem like an afterthought, briefly addressed. In Afghanistan, allied nations are hardly coming together to support the President’s surge — indeed French President Nicolas Sarkozy very publicly stated this week that he would not be contributing any more troops to the endeavor, this on the eve of the Afghanistan conference in London.

And the fight on terrorism has not, as stated, been advanced by the Obama administration — quite the reverse as the nation has become more vulnerable. Nor has the administration distinguished itself by its support for human rights in Iran — in fact it missed a critical moment to get involved during last summer’s uprisings against the Iranian regime. As for the President’s aspiration to control nuclear materials around the world, a goal to be reached through an international conference — that horse left the barn a long time ago.

In “Government’s End,” Jonathan Rauch writes: “Economic thinkers have recognized for generations that every person has two ways to become wealthier. One is to produce more, the other is to capture more of what others produce. … Washington looks increasingly like a public-works jobs program for lawyers and lobbyists, a profit center for professionals who are in business for themselves.”

From complicated new tax credits that small business owners don’t have the time or expertise to take advantage of, to new energy, financial and trade regulations that only large corporations have the lawyers and lobbyists to take advantage of, every policy proposal in Obama’s speech last night is a boon for the lawyer/lobbyist economy in Washington and a hindrance to wealth-creating Americans everywhere. This was a speech only the entrenched interests in Washington could love.

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Wednesday, January 27, 2010

ACCE Response to SOTU

ACCCE President and CEO Steve Miller Statement on 2010 State of the Union Remarks
Click here to read the statement on behalf of Stephen L. Miller, president and CEO of the American Coalition for Clean Coal Electricity (ACCCE), in response to the 2010 State of the Union remarks.

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Hypocrisy Squared

I don't always agree with the Newt, but he's dead right on this one.

Can We Trust the American People Mr. President? Yes, We Can.

In a breathtaking display of hypocrisy, President Obama used his weekly radio address last week to pledge to work with Congress to reverse the decision and declared: "I can't think of anything more devastating to the public interest.
The last thing we need to do is hand more influence to the lobbyists in Washington or more power to the special interests to tip the outcome of elections"
(emphasis added).

This, from the president who negotiated back-room deals with special interests in order to force Democratic health care reform on the American people. This, from a president whose massive expansion of government into the private sector has set off a stampede of lobbyists to Washington to claim their piece of the taxpayers' pie. But even more glaring than the hypocrisy is the obvious contempt that supporters of bureaucratic campaign finance have for the American people.

Ultimately, the question comes down to one of trust. Can we trust the people, and not the government, to determine our political future?

The answer, Mr. President, is a familiar one:

"Yes we can."

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Citizens or Serfs?

"Obamacare is not a battle over health insurance. It is a struggle over whether America will remain a nation of self-directing citizens or docile, powerless serfs."

Q. Do citizens and states have the constitutional authority to challenge Obamacare?
A. Yes. The Ninth and Tenth Amendments to the US Constitution affirm a supremacy of rights reserved to the people and to the states: Amendment 9: "The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people." Amendment 10: "The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people." Moreover, the natural right of contract existed long before our Constitution, and is a fundamental right of citizens and a free people. American courts do not enforce involuntary contract promises.

Q. How can citizens and state legislatures challenge Obamacare mandates?
A. The "Health Care Freedom Act," HB 10, has been introduced in the Virginia General Assembly to challenge Obamacare. It can be introduced in other state legislatures in 2010. Passage of HB 10 ensures that Virginia and other states will take up this challenge of defending Liberty on behalf of citizens who refuse to submit to the illicit demands of Obamacare.

HB 10 states: "No law shall restrict a person's natural right and power of contract to secure the blessings of liberty to choose private health care systems or private plans. No law shall interfere with the right of a person or entity to pay for lawful medical services to preserve life or health, nor shall any law impose a penalty, tax, fee, or fine, 0f any type, to decline or to contract for health care coverage or to participate in any particular health care system or plan, except as required by a court where an individual or entity is a named party in a judicial dispute. Nothing herein shall be construed to expand, limit or otherwise modify any determination of law regarding what constitutes lawful medical services within the Commonwealth."

Q. If Congress passes Obamacare, how does this square with the obligation of Congress to represent their constituents and not impose obligations on citizens against their will?
A. Congress’ ONLY duty is to serve citizens under the express powers of the US Constitution. Congress' own staff concluded (see below) that the proposed insurance mandates are novel and unprecedented in the 220 years since Congress was established in 1789! Forcing citizens to purchase private health insurance violates the compact between elected representatives and citizens reducing government "of, by and for the people," to demands of lords over subjects. The Declaration of Independence affirmed “That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it.” It is the usurpers in Washington who propose to alter self government under the guise of health care reform.

Q. But Congress already mandates tax payments for Social Security and Medicare. What's so different about Obamacare?
A. Congress has never attempted to force individuals to purchase anything in the private sector. An August, 1994, Congressional Budget Office report by Robin Seller, written re: Hillary-care, states: "A mandate requiring all individuals to purchase health insurance would be an unprecedented form of federal action. The government has never required people to buy any good or service as a condition of lawful residence in the United States. An individual mandate would have two features that, in combination, would make it unique. First, it would impose a duty on individuals as members of society.

Second, it would require people to purchase a specific service that would be heavily regulated by the federal government."

Q. Congress compels registration for the military draft, and state governments require the purchase of auto insurance, so can’t Obamacare require insurance purchases?
A. The power to raise an army to provide for the common defense is an enumerated power given to the national government. The mandating of health insurance is not a power granted to Congress. Forty-seven states impose liability insurance to drive on public, tax-paid roads. No insurance is needed to drive at any speed on one's own property. Liability insurance is required to compensate and protect others from injuries. Though it is a widely granted privilege and a practical social necessity, courts have held that driving on a public road is not a right. It is subject to conditions imposed by state legislatures which are empowered to enforce general police and welfare powers.

Q. What else could Congress mandate of citizens if health mandates go unchallenged?
A. Congressmen and Senators could disingenuously tell citizens they will not raise taxes before an election, but then impose spending “mandates” on all Americans to achieve the same goal after they are elected. If Congress can force all Americans to buy health insurance, then Congress can mandate, under heavy penalty of jail or fines, that citizens purchase new windows or insulation to save the environment. Congress could compel states to not register automobiles older than 2005 to minimize air pollution. The potential for abuse is unlimited.

Further, the Congressional Budget Office in 1994, stated Congress would be exercising a dangerous power: "a decision to exclude the costs of an individual mandate to purchase health insurance from the budget could lead policymakers to impose other mandates on individuals … to use mandates to control the allocation of a large portion of the nation's resources without the cost of those actions being controlled through the federal budget process."

Q. Does the "Health Care Freedom Act," protect businesses?
A. Yes, HB 10 protects both individuals and “entities” from mandatory health care purchases. Obamacare requires every company with an annual payroll of $500,000 or more to insure its workers with private plans, approved by the Obama Administration, or pay an 8% payroll tax. Obamacare also requires companies that do provide health insurance to pay 72.5% of an individual's premium, and 65% of a family plan. While Congress has passed laws pertaining to minimum wage, overtime, workplace safety, family leave, and workman's compensation, it never required companies to offer non-wage related or "fringe benefits" such as health insurance. Companies are not required to offer retirement plans, but if they do, they must conform to ERISA laws. Companies may, but are not required to, offer health insurance.

Q. Are there reputable legal scholars who think the Congress may NOT have the constitutional authority to compel health insurance purchase mandates?
A. Yes, “the health care mandate does not purport to regulate or prohibit activity of any kind, whether economic or noneconomic. … To the contrary, it purports to “regulate” inactivity by converting the inactivity of not buying insurance into commercial activity. …In recent years, the Court invalidated two congressional statutes that attempted to regulate noneconomic activities. In United States v. Lopez (1995), it struck down the Gun-Free School Zones Act, which attempted to reach the activity of possessing a gun within a thousand feet of a school. In United States v. Morrison (2000), it invalidated part of the Violence Against Women Act, which regulated gender-motivated violence. Because the Court found the regulated activity in each case to be noneconomic, it was outside the reach of Congress’s Commerce power, regardless of its effect on interstate commerce. To uphold the insurance purchase mandate, the Supreme Court would have to concede that the Commerce Clause has no limits, a proposition that it has never affirmed, that it rejected in Lopez and Morrison, and from which it did not retreat in Raich. …Congress may … not
regulate the individual’s decision not to purchase a service or enter into a contract.”(Heritage Foundation by Georgetown University law professor Randy Barnett can be found here; also see American Law and Justice.)

HB 10 has been introduced by Virginia State Delegate Bob Marshall (13th House of Delegates District) for the 2010 Virginia General Assembly session. If you live in Virginia, ask your own state representative to cosponsor HB 10. If you do not live in Virginia, ask your state representative to introduce HB 10 or a similar bill to challenge Obamacare.

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Tuesday, January 26, 2010

I Am the Fringe; We Are The Fringe

NRSC Memo Responds to DSCC 'Questions' Memo

2:30 PM, Jan 26, 2010 ·
BY Mary Katharine Ham

This morning, the Politico reported on a strategy memo from DSCC Chairman Bob Menendez, urging Democrats to define their opponents early by asking a series of questions designed to pit Republican moderates and Tea Party activists against each other:

  1. Do you believe that Barack Obama is a U.S. citizen?
  2. Do you think the 10th Amendment bars Congress from issuing regulations like minimum health care coverage standards?
  3. Do you think programs like Social Security and Medicare represent socialism and should never have been created in the first place?
  4. Do you think President Obama is a socialist?
  5. Do you think America should return to a gold standard?

If a Republican candidate says no to any of the questions, the memo says Democrats should “make their primary opponent or conservative activists know it.
This will cause them to take heat from their primary opponents and could likely provoke a flip-flop, as it already has several times with Mark Kirk in Illinois.”

The NRSC strikes back this afternoon by calling the DSCC questions a distraction (how Obama-esque) and offering some questions of its own:

  1. Do you believe the $787 billion "stimulus" bill worked?
  2. Would you support a second so-called "stimulus" bill, even though the first failed to create much-needed jobs? Or do you believe the unspent money should be returned to the taxpayers?
  3. Are you willing to hold open discussions to reach an agreement on bipartisan health care reform, or will you continue to support backroom deals - such as the Cornhusker Kickback - in order to ram an unpopular and costly government-run health care bill through Congress?...
  4. Do you support the almost half-trillion dollars in new taxes contained in the Democrats’ health care bill?

Given how the electorate feels about spending right now, the NRSC's questions may indeed have more impact than birther questions.

At any rate, it's a forecast of what's to come from the parties on the trail this year. It's interesting that, even when the media and White House seem to be cknowledging the validity of Tea Party grievances, the DSCC's strategy is to rely on the fact that the movement is entirely made up of kooks. There are certainly fringe elements, and Democrats may land a gotcha every now and then, but this memo reads rather like notes from the Think Progress daily editorial meeting.

It indicates an inclination to treat populist anger as mere fringey Obama hatred when Massachusetts proved that is not all it is.

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FACES of Coal

The Virginia Senate is considering SB 564, a law called the “Stream Saver Bill” to fool voters about the bill’s real intent. This proposed legislation would ban mountaintop mining and effectively shut down coal mining operations in our state.

Virginia coal supports more than 30,000 jobs in mining and many other sectors. By ending coal mining in Virginia, we are jeopardizing the well-being of communities that are already battered by a recession. Moreover, coal generates almost half the electricity Virginians need to go about their daily lives.

Click the link below and to write your state legislators today. Urge them to stand up for affordable, domestic energy and good jobs. Tell them to say “No” to SB 564.

Thank you for your support.
Federation for American Coal, Energy and Security
(FACES of Coal)

Click the link below to log in and send your message:

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Keep Them Reeling!!!

H/T Family Foundation

SB 417, the Senate version of the Health Care Freedom Act, passed the Senate Committee on Commerce and Labor. This is a BIG WIN! This bill was passed along with two other identical bills, SB 311 and SB 283. The bills should go to the Senate floor and could be voted on as early as Thursday. You should have seen the look on Senator Saslaw’s face when he realized two Democrats on the committee (Senators Colgan and Puckett) voted YES and the bill would pass the committee. Priceless.

Contact Senators Puckett and Colgan today and THANK them for voting YES on SB 417. Without these two Senators crossing the aisle and voting for the bill, it would have died a grisly death in the committee.
Senator Charles J. Colgan (D) (804) 698-7529
Senator Phillip P. Puckett (D) (804) 698-7538

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Karl Marx and John Smith?

I just caught a conversation on Becks show. A lady called in and said she and her husband had been to Jamestown and saw a film that had Karl Marx in it. I got distracted and missed some of the call.

Anyone else know about this?

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Monday, January 25, 2010

States Rights Legislation-Federal Healthcare Mandates

H/T Family Foundation

Lets keep them in shock. Thank you for standing up for the citizens of the Commonwealth.
Three Senate bills on a topic that has galvanized the Commonwealth and nation – a state’s sovereignty over federal intrusion into individuals’ health care – passed the Senate Commerce and Labor Committee today by the barest 8-7 votes. Democrat Senators Charles Colgan (D-29, Manassas) and Phillip Puckett (D-38, Tazewell) voted with a united Republican committee membership to shock committee liberals, including Majority Leader and committee chairman Dick Saslaw (D-35, Springfield).

These bills now go to the Senate floor and will be voted on in the next two days! Please contact your senator immediately and ask him or her to vote for SB 311, SB 417 and SB 283. If Senators Colgan or Puckett represent you, or if your senator voted for the bills in committee, please thank them. The bills are patroned by Senators Steve Martin (R-11, Chesterfield), Jill Vogel (R-27, Winchester) and Fred Quayle (R-13, Suffolk), respectively.

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More From Mark Alexander

"The [U.S.] Constitution is a limitation on the government, not on private individuals... It does not prescribe the conduct of private individuals, only the conduct of the government... It is not a charter for government power, but a charter of the citizen's protection against the government." --philosopher and novelist Ayn Rand (1905-1982)

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What Has Brown Done For Us?

I added the boldface to reinforce the statement.

From Patriot Post's "The Brief"
...Brown ran a great campaign, but good candidates lose uphill battles all the time in places like Massachusetts. And no, MS-NBC, this was not a Tip O'Neil 'all politics are local' referendum on potholes and such. Thanks to big government liberals, no politics are local anymore. Not even an obscure congressional district known as NY-23. Every single seat may now hold the key to Washington's ability to reach into the homes and wallets and lives of every American for any reason they deem necessary. And that's what this was about, with health care as the key issue but only one of many concerns about intrusive government." --columnist C. Edmund Wright

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Heritage Morning Bell - Unions

Government Unions Win, You Lose

Since President Barack Obama was sworn into office, the U.S. economy has shed 3.4 million jobs and the unemployment rate has risen to 10%. But not all sectors of the economy have been suffering equally. In fact, the sector of the economy most supportive of President Obama has not only avoided contraction, but has actually managed to grow instead.

According to a report released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) last Friday, in 2009 the number of federal, state and local government employees represented by unions actually rose by 64,000. Coupled with union losses in the private sector
economy, 2009 became the first year in American history that a majority of American union members work for the government. Specifically, 52% of all union members now work for the federal, state or local government, up from 49% in 2008. Or, to better illustrate these statistics: three times more union members work in the Post Office than in the auto industry.

So what? Why should Americans care if unions are now dominated by workers who get their paychecks from governments, instead of workers who get their paychecks from private firms? There's one simple reason: private firms face competition; governments don't.

Collective bargaining, the anti-trust exemption at the heart of a union's power, was created to help workers seize their "fair share" of business profits. But if a union ends up extracting a contract from a private firm that eats up too much of the profits, then that firm will be unable to reinvest those profits and will lose out to competitors. But when a union extracts a generous contract from a government, the answer is always higher taxes or borrowing to pay for the bloated spending. And make no mistake: unionized government worker compensation is bloated.

As Heritage fellow James Sherk notes "[t]he average worker for a state or local government earns $39.83 an hour in wages and benefits compared to $27.49 an hour in the private sector. While over 80 percent of state and local workers have pensions, just 50 percent of private-sector workers do. These differences remain after controlling for education, skills and demographics."

Unionized government employees not only want to keep their bloated compensation packages, but their leaders are desperate for more members and more union dues. That is why public-sector unions have become a fierce lobbying force for higher taxes and more spending across the country. Organized labor once fought against taxes and regulations that impeded the economic interests of their employers, but now they are in alliance with environmentalists pushing private sector and economy-crippling cap-and-trade legislation.

It's worth noting that the BLS did not count the United Auto Workers working for General Motors and Chrysler as unionized government employees. But perhaps they should have. Our country will share their fate unless something is done about unionized government power.

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Heritage Foundation Quick Hits

Three different White House advisers (Senior Adviser Valerie Jarrett, Press Secretary Robert Gibbs and Senior Adviser David Axelrod) gave three different estimates for the number of jobs President Obama's economic stimulus program "created or saved" this Sunday.

According to the latest CNN poll, 56% of Americans now oppose President Barack Obama's economic stimulus program.

Rep. Barney Frank (D-MA) said his committee was preparing to recommend "abolishing" Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

The Obama administration Guantanamo Bay task force has concluded that at least 47 prisoners must be held indefinitely without civilian or military trial.

Venezuela President Hugo Chavez has ordered popular television station RCTV off the air for not televising Chavez's speeches in their entirety.

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DCExaminer Morrning Email Blast

Michael Barone - Voters spurn the 'boob bait' of the educated class
Members of "the educated class" are pleased by Obama's decision to close Guantanamo and congressional Democrats' bills addressing supposed global warming. They are puzzled by his reticence to advance gay rights but assume that in his heart he is on their side.
They support more tepidly the Democrats' big government spending, higher taxes and health care bills as necessary to attract the votes of the less enlightened and well-off. For "the educated class," such programs are, in the words of the late Sen. Pat Moynihan, "boob bait for the bubbas."

But the Massachusetts equivalent of the bubbas weren't biting

Chris Stirewalt - Republicans think locally for 2010 and beyond By having Obama run as a shamanistic healer rather than as a politician with a program, Plouffe set up the president for a precipitous fall.
Before Plouffe gets to the White House, one guy he should call is Ed Gillespie.

Byron York - Abdulmutallab interrogated for less than an hour; White House defends handling of terrorist case
The White House is not disputing a report that FBI agents questioned accused Northwest Airlines bomber Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab for just 50 minutes before deciding to grant him the right to remain silent and provide him with a court-appointed lawyer -- a decision that led Abdulmutallab to stop talking and provide no more information.

Susan Ferrechio - Dems look for a way to press ahead on health care
Democrats are weighing two possibilities: Pass a scaled-back version in smaller pieces, or try to move the current Senate health care bill through the House and then make changes to it through a parliamentary maneuver known as reconciliation, which would require just 51 votes for passage.

More Stories
Taxpayer-owned General Motors spent $1.48 million on lobbying in fourth quarter
Want to know what campaign finance reform is really about? Watch this video
Does Red Sox President Larry Lucchino regret his $2,000 to Martha Coakley

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Sunday, January 24, 2010

WHO DAT!!!!!

SAINTS WIN!!!!!!! SAINTS WIN!!!!!!!!


SAINTS WIN!!!!!!! SAINTS WIN!!!!!!!!!




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Saturday, January 23, 2010

Marines succeed in Iraq

FoxNews reports that the United States Marine Corps has victoriously completed its mission in Anbar Province, Iraq. The USMC handed over control to the Army on Saturday, ending its historic role after almost 7 years of combat in the Iraq campaign.

Semper Fi!

h/t Gateway Pundit

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Simulation With Voice Over From ATC and Captain Sullenberger


Who Is Ellie Light?

She claims a "wonderment at the lack of media support for President Obama is prompting the letter writing campaign."

Poor neglected Zero. No one will let him speak, everyone's ignoring him. /sarc.

We know what this is. Seminar writers. The least the writer could do is use their real name and admit they're working for the DNC, DNCC, ACORN, OFA, and MOVEON.

H/T DrudgeReport via Cleveland Plain Dealer

Obama has suspicious number of letter-writing fans named 'Ellie Light'
By Sabrina Eaton, The Plain Dealer
January 22, 2010, 5:35AM

Ellie Light sure gets around.
In recent weeks, Light has published virtually identical “Letters to the Editor” in support of President Barack Obama in more than a dozen newspapers.

Every letter claimed a different residence for Light that happened to be in the newspaper’s circulation area.“It’s time for Americans to realize that governing is hard work, and that a president can’t just wave a magic wand and fix everything,” said a letter from alleged Philadelphian Ellie Light, that was published in the Jan. 19 edition of The Philadelphia Daily News.

Variations of Light’s letter ran in Ohio’s Mansfield News Journal on Jan. 13, with Light claiming an address in Mansfield; in New Mexico’s Ruidoso News on Jan. 12, claiming an address in Three Rivers; in South Carolina’s The Sun News on Jan. 18, claiming an address in Myrtle Beach; and in the Daily News Leader of Staunton, Virginia on Jan. 15, claiming an address in Waynesboro. Her publications list includes other papers in Ohio, West Virginia, Maine, Michigan, Iowa, Pennsylvania and California, all claiming separate addresses.

Light – who e-mailed an identical missive to this reporter on Jan. 16 without listing a hometown – would not answer e-mailed questions about the address discrepancies in newspapers that ran her letter, or her identity, although she did say she wasn’t a former co-worker of this reporter’s, who had a similar name.

“I do not write as a representative of any organization,” she said in an e-mail. “The letter I wrote was motivated by surprise and wonderment at the absence of any media support for our President, who won a record-breaking election by a landslide less than 18 months ago, and now, seems to be abandoned by all, supposedly for the infantile reason that he couldn’t make all of Bush’s errors disappear in one day.”

University of Missouri journalism professor Tom Rosenstiel, co-author of a textbook on journalistic values titled “The Elements of Journalism,” reacted with surprise and wonderment upon learning of Light’s widespread publication under multiple addresses.

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Eliminate the Corporate Tax

H/T Tertium Quids

Elimination of corporate income tax
HB 119 Income tax, corporate; eliminates State tax for taxable years on and after January 1, 2010. Harry R. Purkey

Eliminates Virginia's corporate income tax for taxable years beginning on and after January 1, 2010.Status:
01/05/10 House: Referred to Committee on Finance
01/19/10 House: Assigned Finance sub: #2
This subcommittee usually meets Wednesdays 1/2 hour after adjournment in House Room D.

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Milblog Conference 2010-Featured Charities

Featured Charities at the 2010 Fifth Annual Milblog Conference
By Andi

A couple of years ago, we began choosing military charities to feature at The MilBlog Conference. This year, given it's the Fifth Anniversary Conference, we've chosen two charities to feature.

They are: Homes For Our Troops

We are Homes for Our Troops, a national non-profit, non-partisan 501(c)(3) organization founded in 2004. We are strongly committed to helping those who have selflessly given to our country and have returned home with serious disabilities and injuries since September 11, 2001. It is our duty and our honor to assist severely injured Servicemen and Servicewomen and their immediate families by raising donations of money, building materials and professional labor and to coordinate the process of building a home that provides maximum freedom of movement and the ability to live more independently.

The homes provided by Homes for Our Troops are given at NO COST to the Veterans we serve.
Soldiers' Angels

Soldiers' Angels is a volunteer-led 501(c)(3) non-profit organization providing aid and comfort to the men and women of the United States Army, Marines, Navy, Air Force, Coast Guard, and their families. Founded by the mother of two American soldiers, we are an international, volunteer-led organization supporting America's men and women in uniform.

With over 30 different teams and projects, our nearly 200,000 volunteers assist veterans, wounded and deployed personnel and their families in a variety of unique and effective ways.
This year, we're bringing back the fun and highly successful Jail-N-Bail. We'll run the jailhouse for one hour during Friday's opening cocktail reception. All funds from the Jail-N-Bail will go to the featured charities. Attendees who issue arrest warrants and criminals who raise bail money will choose which organization will receive their donation. Both organizations will be presented with funds raised at Saturday night's dinner and party.

In the past, our attendees and sponsors have been very generous to our featured charities and we're grateful to all who have donated.

There is no pressure on attendees to give to the charities. At a minimum, we want to spotlight organizations which are doing great things for the military community, and if we can raise some money to help them continue their great work in the process - all the better.

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Marine Milblogger and SF Medics In Haiti

Our servicemen continue their dedication to helping the less fortunate.

Jake Wood who blogged from the frontlines of Iraq and Afghanistan, while dealing with sniper fire and hunting I.E.Ds, is now blogging about the relief efforts in Haiti.

On January 17th, Jake and his 4 man team began taking medicine and much-needed supplies to the people of Haiti. His web site Jake’s Life, has now become Team Rubicon. You can stay updated on all the good they’re doing by visiting Jake’s
. Military Blog Blackfive has also been covering their journey since the beginning, posting daily updates including photos and dispatches. Team Rubicon’s efforts have also received attention in the news – including a story by Catholic Online, a Catholic news site that reaches over 100 thousand users per day.

Jake Wood, a remarkable young US Marine military blooger (milblogger) and former University of Wisconsin Badgers football player, has established Team Rubicon for a joint medical relief operation with Jesuits in Port au Prince.

The operation is able to move more swiftly than larger, established aid organizations because it is privately-funded and overcomes three critical blocks in the flow of aid: security, lack of water, and organizational cumbersomeness.

Wood blogged his recent combat experience in Iraq and Afghanistan as Badger Jake at Jake’s Life, which has now become the home of Team Rubicon. He also served as a volunteer in the aftermath of hurricane Katrina.

According to Jake’s blog, Team Rubicon is assembling a second team to go to Haiti and they’re in need of: ER doctors, EMTs with pediatric skills. Rally point will be Fayetteville, NC. Click here for more info.

Read the entire Catholic Online story here.

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Public Defender Says Government Missed The Signs

Well, they were more like billboards than signs; with neon letters.

Attorney: Soldier’s death might have been stopped

This story is about two brave American recruiters, Pvt. William Long, who was murdered, and Pvt. Quinton Ezeagwula, who was wounded, last June. The terrorist who murdered them came from, guess where?!

Now the schmucky DUI lawyer, Claiborne Ferguson, who is representing the terrorist in this case, wants the state to pay his attorney fees because the government should have stopped this terrorist before he killed and wounded these two young Brave and Courageous Americans who stepped up to the plate to protect you and I. AND the Judge agreed!!!!!!!!!!!!

"Outside court, Ferguson questioned whether the FBI missed warning signs for the June 1 shooting, in which Pvt. William Andrew Long was killed and Pvt. Quinton Ezeagwula was wounded.

In an interview with The Associated Press, Ferguson said Muhammad claimed he had been questioned by the FBI when he was in Yemen in September 2007, after he converted to Islam. Yemeni immigration officials arrested Muhammad in November 2008 after he overstayed his visa and possessed a fake Somali passport.

“I think somebody who recently converts traveling to Yemen, winding up getting arrested and thrown into jail in a foreign country, if it’s not a red flag, it’s certainly a yellow flag that should have gotten somebody’s attention,” Ferguson said.

(this reminds me of Michael Behenna's case, trying to tell his superiors that Ali Mansur had a Syrian passport and what was he up to and why are we releasing him?! God knows how many other American Soldiers Ali Mansur would have killed. Michael Behenna should be given a medal!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!)

And since the case will be that the FBI should have prevented the murder and wounding of these two brave young Americans because they knew about his Yemen trip and fake Somali passport, I can only imagine what would have happened to Michael Behenna if Ali Mansur had made it back to his village and blown up a whole convoy of our Soldiers, then Michael would have been held responsible for taking the terrorist back to his village.
What about all the signs that could have prevented Ft. Hood so I suppose this butcher will present the same defense and we're going to pay for this too folks!!!

The butcher terrorists are killing our Soldiers and we are paying to defend them even when they say they are guilty (but oh, wait a minute, the terrorists are justified in murdering us because we are killing their fellow butchers in the Middle East and they don't like it!)

How much more of this insanity are the American people going to stand for before we rise up into the streets and say NO MORE! As far as I'm concerned, the Judge and this DUI lawyer (crazy like a fox) are nutcases and should be locked up in the nuthouse but maybe we taxpayers belong in the nuthouse too.

And George Washington darn near froze on the Delaware River for liberty and justice for all. He warned us how to protect that liberty and justice he fought so hard to attain:

"The willingness with which our young people are likely to serve in any war, no matter how justified, shall be directly proportional to how they perceive the Veterans of earlier wars were treated and appreciated by their nation."

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Friday, January 22, 2010

Heritage Foundation on SCOTUS Decision

Supreme Court upholds First Amendment
January 22, 2010 By Amanda J. Reinecker

On Thursday, the Supreme Court upheld the First Amendment and appropriately struck down government prohibitions on many sorts of privately-funded political advertising. In doing so, Heritage Foundation legal scholar Hans von Spakovsky argues, the court "upheld some of the most important principles: the right to engage in free speech, particularly political speech, and the right to freely associate."

The case, Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, originated as a question about campaign finance laws and whether they apply to an unflattering film about then-Senator Hillary Clinton. After the government argued that campaign finance laws could even lead to bans on books, the Court ordered a rare re-argument to address the broader constitutionality of limiting corporations' independent spending during federal election campaigns.

It was a question of "ancient First Amendment principles," the Court stated in its majority opinion. It is no coincidence that the rights to free speech and assembly are among the first mentioned in our Bill of Rights -- our Founders recognized that these rights are essential to the preservation of a free government.

"Speech is an essential mechanism of democracy and the means to hold officials accountable to the people," Spakovsky argues. But the right to free speech is not limited to individual persons, he argues. For-profit and non-profit organizations are greatly "affected, damaged, or even lost" by the laws Congress passes, so there is "no rational reason why they should not be able to engage in independent political activity."

Those who criticize the Court's 5-4 decision fail to recognize a key component about this critical First Principle: free speech "is written in terms of 'speech,' not speakers," as Justice Scalia explained in a concurring opinion. It is a right that applies to all. To deny it to would be an obfuscation of the written law and a violation of a fundamental right.

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Corporations:Creations of the State, Book Banning, and Other Stupid Things

The NY Times says corporations are creations of the state and not entitled to certain 1st Amendment rights when their free speech addresses issues or politics.

Justice Department lawyers stood in the Supreme Court and said, out loud,
that the government has the right to ban a book if it contains even one reference to a candidate for elected office, no matter the context.

The Banking Queen, Bwaney Fwank, did his best rightously indignate impersonation of Gobbels and said democracy is now being ruled by greedy, evil corporations. Now he wants to bypass the Constitution and impose restrictions by using corporate law. He says that would take care of that pesky 1st Amendment.

Charles "Chuckie-boy" Schumer says it's a sad day for democracy.

Do these statements strike anyone else as slightly fascist or is it just me?

Thank goodness a majority of the SCOTUS thinks this mindset is just mildly anti-American and granted corporations the right to spend lawfully obtained funds to promote an issue or become an issues advocate.

We the have the right as private citizens, at least for now, to agree or disagree with these corporations, when we purchase or refuse to purchase, goods or services.

Thats called a free market.

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Wednesday, January 20, 2010

DCProtestWarrior in Norfolk With NCGOE


Representative Sue Myrick NC-09


This Is Done In Communist and Totalitarian Regimes

They change the rules to benefit themsleves.

If somehow, those ignorant peasants and simle-minded serfs manage to start moving things politially in a direction that appears favorable to them, the politicians simply adjust the rules to change with the time.

Bawney Fwank, that lovable little Lenin-wannabe, has suggested that the 60 vote rule is now somehow un-Consitutional. We suddenly find ourselves in the midst of a Constitutional crisis.

Bawney, your socialist butt-buddies in the Senate didn't have a problem with the 60 vote rule while they had the majority. Now that we have potentially upset the "balance of power" in the Senate, they want to change the rules.

Too bad. Wait until November when we run every one of your sorry asses out and really change the balance of power, with the people, the citizens, in charge.

Jim Webb is next on the list. I've had about as much as I can stand from this yahoo. He can't be trusted. He was probably handed that statement and told to be the "voice of reason" by the ballerina and Dabney Coleman. (Axelrod--I swear he looks like Dabney Coleman).

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"He probably failed lunch."

Caution: Put down any drinks before watching.

h/t Insty



In honor of Scott Brown's AMAZING win and to the patriots that voted for him.

Well I just got back from a break in the fight
I was weighing in heavy but still feeling alright
all I hear in the distance - mines and shells
here come the sirens wailing another attack to be repelled

Do you think we're gonna make it?
I don't know unless we try
you could sit here scared to move
or we could take them by surprise
it's submission that they want
it's surrender that they need
when we're doing it their way
their aims will be achieved

They're gonna come when you're not ready
when you're not too well-prepared
they're gonna prey upon your weakness
no man's soul is ever spared
you've got to stand up, yeah, and fight them
show them what it's all about
this man is not for sale
there will be no backing down.

Stand up and fight and I'll stand up with you
We shall succeed,
Stand up and fight and I'll stand up with you

They won't get me, they won't get me
though they never cease to try
they won't get me, they won't get me
I would rather fight and die
they won't get me, they won't get me
well my friend will they get you?
when they get you, when they get you
tell me what you're gonna do?

Do you think we're gonna make it?
I don't know unless we try
you could sit here scared to move
or we could take them by surprise
it's submission that they want
it's surrender that they need
when we're doing it their way
their aims will be achieved.

They're gonna come when you're not ready
when you're not too well-prepared
they're gonna prey upon your weakness
no man's soul is ever spared
you've got to stand up, yeah, and fight them
show them what it's all about
this man is not for sale
there will be no backing down.

[Chorus: x2]
Stand up and fight and I'll stand up with you
We shall succeed
Stand up and fight and I'll stand up with you


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Monday, January 18, 2010

Podcasts You Should Hear

Jimmy Barrett talks to John Felmy from American Petroleum Institute about offshore drilling.

Then he talks to Leighton Steward about CO2.

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Is Zero Violating the Hatch Act?

Is Obama Violating The Hatch Act?

Bill Levinson says is using taxpayer dollars to endorse Democratic candidates, and to promote the partisan website

Obama is, as the head of his party, certainly entitled to give campaign speeches on behalf of Democratic candidates such as Martha Coakley, an individual who advanced her career by keeping an innocent man (Amirault) in prison. We suspect, however, that he cannot legally use taxpayer money for this purpose., is the property of the United States Government, and, as such, is the property of America’s taxpayers.

Several pages at this website endorse the election or re-election of Democratic candidates, and one recommends that people visit Organizing for America (

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More on the KKK and Democrats

The KKK was the terrorist wing of the Democrat Party.
Our nation's top historians reveal that the Democratic Party gave us the Ku Klux Klan, Black Codes, Jim Crow Laws and other repressive legislation which resulted in the multitude of murders, lynchings, mutilations, and intimidations (of thousands of black and white Republicans). On the issue of slavery: historians say the Democrats gave their lives to expand it, the Republicans gave their lives to ban it. "--The KKK was the terrorist wing of the Democrat Party.--"

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Scott Brown Video

H/T RaceBannon
Due to being at full capacity at Mechanics Hall in Worcester, MA the remaining supporters were brought to the Crown Plaza where this was filmed. The ballroom at the hotel was also at full capacity. Scott Brown stopped by to thank all of his supporters.

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Warriors of Honor

Character: Lee and Jackson

"Let each man resolve to be victorious, and that the right of self-government, liberty, and peace shall find him a defender." --Robert E. Lee

"[M]y religious belief teaches me to feel as safe in battle as in bed. God has fixed the time for my death. I do not concern myself about that, but to be always ready, no matter when it may overtake me. That is the way all men should live, and then all would be equally brave." --Thomas J. "Stonewall" Jackson

Today we take a moment to remember the birth anniversaries of Robert E. Lee (Jan. 19) and Stonewall Jackson (Jan. 21), two of the greatest military commanders in American history. They also were great men of faith who gave their all (Jackson his life) for the cause of liberty and states' rights, which we at The Patriot hold so dear. Some may question our decision to honor men of the Confederate States of America, but we encourage those readers to consider our correction of the record. The honor we give these men has its roots in the founding of this great nation.

Mark Alexander notes in his essay,"Lincoln's Legacy at 200," that "the causal case for states' rights is most aptly demonstrated by the words and actions of Gen. Lee, who detested slavery and opposed secession. In 1860, however, Gen. Lee declined Lincoln's request that he take command of the Army of the Potomac, saying that his first allegiance was to his home state of Virginia: 'I have, therefore, resigned my commission in the army, and save in defense of my native state... I hope I may never be called on to draw my sword.'

He would, soon thereafter, take command of the Army of Northern Virginia, rallying his officers with these words: 'Let each man resolve to be victorious, and that the right of self-government, liberty, and peace
shall find him a defender.'"

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Report from Scott Brown Rally

H/T to brother Marine RaceBannon who was on the ground yesterday at the Scott Brown Rally, and to


Race's report is below:

Wow, what a GREAT day!
I got there about 1300, the sky was overcast, chilly, and saw about 6 supporters with signs in two locations as I drove to the Mechanics Hall in Worcester to see and hear Scott Brown.

I struck up conversations with several former Marines on site early like me along with their wives Most of us early birds were outsiders, not local, while locals drove by waving hands, beeping horns, many many thumbs up and literally only THREE thumbs down! NOT ONE Democrat IQ salute! Not one shouting of obscenities that I heard toward us!

The crowd gathered slowly but enthusiastically, with many Hartford Tea Party people there, like Wayne, Robin and Stan, June, Rusty and Tanya. All were in fine spirits.

I met with Freeper Electric Strawberry by pure chance, he hear me leading chants for Scott Brown from across the street and we had a hearty reunion!

As the crowd grew in size, the enthusiasm grew with it and soon we had over 2000 people on the sidewalks and outer lanes of a 4 lane road in front of Mechanics Hall. This was by 1400. Wow, what a crowd. They all loved cheering, singing, all had homemade signs with plenty of signs provided by the campaign which were waved with enthusiastic vigor.

The bus holding the main part of Scott Brown's campaign arrived about 1530 to much thunderous applause. The cars all had to squeeze by in a single lane, taking
turns in each direction until the police shut down the streets and the people spread out in full in front of Mechanics Hall.

I was stunned, all 4 lanes were filled with people as were the sidewalks, with a clear 2000 to 3000 people standing outside that I could tell for sure, but that assessment changed rapidly.

At 1600 the doors opened and a small throng entered the building where Scott would speak and a tiny handfull of people entered that was apparent. I am unsure of the seating capacity, but the building looked to hold at least 350 to 500 max inside, just a guess from looking, I didn't look it up.

After being told that the building capacity was filled, we heard an announcement from a campaign staffer that two additional locations were available for viewers and
I went to Lexington Hall, one of the banquet rooms at the Crown Plaza Hotel on Main street.

The throng of people that moved down the street, I watch for 1 minute as people moved and then turned to go myself and was stunned. I didn't see many people go by men, only a hundred or so, but in front of me were over 1000 people walking toward the hotel with another 500 to 750 still to leave the front of the Mechanics Hall! I had NO IDEA where the people came from who were walking ahead of me but the number was huge!

Inside the hotel, we were led to a large banquet room where I heard differing amounts on the maximum occupancy, but I would have guessed it was 350 seated at tables maximum, only that room had no tables and everyone was standing shoulder to shoulder with the number estimated over 1000 to 1200 people!

I mean it was like Sardines! It was AWSOME!

They had a 10’ by 10’ screen that projected the speech given by the speakers, which included several local sports talk guys who played for the patriots, George Ratzenberger who played Cliff on Cheers, Doug Flutie from Boston College HAIL MARY days, with Doug Flutie introducing Scott Brown!

Scott gave a professional speech with one line that stuck in my mind most of all:
That line brought down the house!

Scott finished with his family behind him and announced he was coming to the Hotel
where I was to make us know we were not forgotten.

After his quick speech which he had to give through a megaphone due to a technical malfunction from the hotel, I got in line to shake his hand and give him a souvenir from the DUMP DODD Campaign: One of the final DUMP DODD Campaign buttons. I told him what it was and where it came from and told him it is his good luck charm! If the people of Connecticut can get rid of Dodd, we have hope in You, Scott!
He looked at me, looked at the button, looked at me...he absolutely appeared stunned at the support he was getting.

In his speeches he referred to how he knew this was a race of national importance, but I'd bet it was small gestures like that, from someone out of state to wish him well, I'd bet he is thankful for all our efforts and time spent well.

All in all, it was such a positive rally.

Learning that Martha Coakly poo pooed shaking hands at Fenway with the little people, knowing she said there were no terrorists in gosh, if she wins, it is proof of voter fraud.

I had a dozen people tell me they were lifelong democrats and were voting for Scott. UNION members telling me they were voting for Scott.

What a great time. By the way, we can all say one great thing: We may not be old enough to know of the Shot heard round the world, but we are all living to know of THE SCOTT heard round the world!

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Morning Must Reads from DCExaminer

Boston Herald -- Brown, Coakley will cross paths at event
Democratic chieftains have stopped scrambling for Senate Candidate Martha Coakley and now seem to be managing expectations: trashing her candidacy on background to reporters and even lamenting the low-energy speech President Obama delivered for Coakley Sunday night.
The state of the race right now seems to be Brown in the lead just outside the margin of error. Democrats assume that members of their party will show up stronger than the polls are showing, but a consistent under-sampling of 5 points seems unlikely. As remarkable as it sounds, Brown seems to have the edge going into the home stretch, something reporters and casual observers on the ground confirm.

As Examiner colleague Susan Ferrechio observed, while there was considerable excitement over the president’s visit to Boston on Coakley’s behalf, the bigger crowd and the energy was out at Mechanics Hall in Worcester with Scott Brown.
Writer Hillary Chabot tells us that Brown and Coakley will have their first meeting since their debate last week, when Coakley’s implosion really started picking up speed, today at a Martin Luther King breakfast. After that, Brown is back in his truck.
“Brown will meet up with Bruins fans today outside the TD Garden, then he’ll head to North Andover and Littleton. He’ll cap off the race at Luciano’s restaurant in his hometown of Wrentham for a final rally before voters head to the polls.
Brown was bolstered by former Gov. Paul Cellucci yesterday as he toured Wachusett Mountain ski area.
‘We need to send a message to Washington that we are not going to have business as usual,’ hollered Brown as he stood on a picnic table surrounded by supporters.”

New York Times -- Hoping It Won’t Be Needed, Democrats Ponder a Backup Plan on Health Care Bill

Democrats have hinted that if Scott Brown pulls off the biggest political upset in recent memory, they will still pass the health care plan currently lingering in fake-conference limbo. Letting the bill die would be a crippling blow to the Obamagenda and would mean that the 11th Congress was for naught.
Now Democrats are coalescing around the idea of passing the Senate plan straight through the House to avoid trouble in the Senate.
Both other options in the event of a Brown win – a rush vote before Brown can be seated and attempting passage of the new plan on a 51-vote parliamentary trick are too risky to use: both could fail and the political costs would be enormous.
While Union members might not like losing their $60 billion health insurance tax exemption and anti-abortion members of the House might not like Sen. Ben Nelson’s compromise on elective-abortion subsidies, and no one likes the sweet deals Nelson and a few others got for their votes or the big paydays for insurance companies and drugmakers, Speaker Nancy Pelosi would be empowered with her caucus by a Brown win, arguing that it would be the shoddy Senate bill or nothing.
Writer David Herszenhorn explains:
“A House Democratic aide said the House view of the Senate bill had not changed. ‘We are working toward a compromise bill,’ the aide said.
The Republican Senate leader, Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, appearing on ‘Fox News Sunday,’ warned that health care would be a political weapon under any circumstances.
‘I think the politics are toxic for the Democrats either way,’ Mr. McConnell said.”

Washington Post -- Security fears mount in lawless post-earthquake Haiti
One advantage that the U.S. had in dealing with the 2007 tsunami was that there was little official international presence in the region. Our troops, relief workers, and political leaders could charge in and provide immediate assistance.
Haiti, meanwhile, is the Times Square of international aid and NGOs, with every neighborhood already a pet project for sub UN sub-agency or French aid agency before the earthquake. With a dysfunctional government and a horrible local infrastructure before the quake, U.S. aid has been kept out by aid-group turf battles and literal turf battles between local street mobs.
Writers Manuel Roig-Franzia, Mary Beth Sheridan, and Michael Ruane explain that Haitians are calling for their old friends, the United States Marines, to come bring order so aid can start flowing. (“a typical sign read: ‘Welcome the U.S. Marine. We need some help. Dead bodies inside.’”) But today, 10,000 American troops will still be floating off shore because no one is in charge of the city of Port-Au-Prince and even getting flights to land at the airport requires diplomatic jostling with the U.N. and others.
“Still, some progress is being made. The U.S. 18th Airborne set up a headquarters at the airport, and the 82nd Airborne was establishing small posts around the city to protect food and water drops. The 82nd Airborne had 500 troops here as of Sunday night, and 750 more were expected Monday.”

Wall Street Journal -- Explosions Rock Kabul
Writers Yaroslov Trofimov, Alan Cullison, and Habib Zahori report on the most brazen attacks on the city of Kabul since the American invasion of 2001.
A team of 20 Taliban fighters and jihadi suicide bombers launched a coordinated attack on the capital city’s Justice building and other symbols of the West – a shopping plaza, movie theater, etc.
The attacks coincided with the swearing-in of embattled president Hamid Karzai’s new cabinet, installed after much bickering with the Afghan parliament.
“Militants seized the Aryana cinema, exchanging gunfire with Afghan and international security for hours as U.S. military helicopters hovered overhead. Other explosions, some carried out by suicide bombers and others by car bombs, were heard near the ministry of defense, the ministry of justice and the central bank – all of them located in a heavily guarded zone of Kabul that's lined with blast barriers and protected by military checkpoints.
An hour and a half after the attacks began, and as the firing began to subside, another blast occurred near the ministry of education, setting the nearby Gul Bahar shopping center on fire. According to witnesses, it was carried out by a car bomb hidden in a military ambulance vehicle.”

Los Angeles Times -- Obama speaks from pulpit, noting progress and difficulty in America
In his Martin Luther King Day sermon at a Washington church Sunday, President Obama sounded like a man who needed a refuge from persecution.
Obama lamented how his efforts to remake Washington had been thwarted by a system that resists change and by special interests.
Writer Mark Silva has details:
“‘Folks ask me sometimes why I look so calm,’ Obama said, his voice rising.
‘I have a confession to make here. There are times where I am not so calm. . . . There are times when the words that are spoken about me hurt. There are times when the barbs sting. . . . During those times it is faith that brings me calm.’”

--Chris Stirewalt's column on political technology in the Massachusetts Senate race is here.

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DCExaminer Morrning Email Blast

Byron York - Two factors will decide Massachusetts Senate race
After all the speeches, politicking, and attack ads, there are just two issues that will determine the winner of the Massachusetts Senate seat in Tuesday's special election. The first is health care and the second is one-party government. And in Massachusetts, neither issue works exactly as outsiders might think -- and right now both are working in favor of Republican Scott Brown.

The Coakley campaign, struggling against surging Republican Scott Brown, has been touting Clinton's appearance for Martha Coakley, the struggling Democratic Senate candidate in Massachusetts, has had the luxury of two presidents campaigning for her. Bill Clinton was in Boston and Worcester on Friday, and Barack Obama came to Boston today.

Byron York - Will Obama's lackluster speech really help Coakley?
Who was more effective? Having watched Clinton's Boston speech from inside the room Friday, and Obama's speech on television today, it's impossible to escape the conclusion that Clinton just blew Obama's doors off. Obama's speech was halting, wandering, and humorless; the president looked as if he didn't want to be there. There's no doubt the crowd was excited to see Obama, but he seemed so hesitant and out-of-rhythm at the top that it appeared he might have been having teleprompter trouble, and he was also clearly rattled and unable to handle the completely-predictable presence of a heckler.

Chris Stirewalt - Republicans learn to play the technology game
GOP members of Congress have more than twice as many Twitter followers than their Democratic counterparts and tweet five times more often. Minority Leader John Boehner may look like a character from Mad Men, but the Don Draper of the House has a “director of new media” and more than 30,000 Facebook fans – almost four times as many as Nancy Pelosi.

Mark Hemingway - 'Multiple advisers to President Obama' saying Coakley will lose?
Reports CNN's Ed Henry: Multiple advisers to President Obama have privately told party officials that they believe Democrat Martha Coakley is going to lose Tuesday's special election to fill the Massachusetts Senate seat held by the late Ted Kennedy for more than 40 years, several Democratic sources told CNN Sunday.

More Stories
Who's investing in Martha Coakley: AHIP, BIO, and the billion-dollar winner of Obamacare
Democratic 'tolerance' rears its ugly head in Mass. Senate race
Dems' lock on Senate is mixed blessing for Obama

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