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Obama’s Former Bodyguard Seeks to Unseat Democratic Senator October 5, 2011

Posted by seeineye in : Politics , add a comment

A former Secret Service agent who vowed to take a bullet for Presidents Obama and Bush is now trying to take Benjamin Cardin’s Senate seat.

Daniel Bongino spent 12 years with the Secret Service before he resigned in May to launch a Senate campaign to challenge the Maryland Democrat.

Bongino, 36, who is running as a Republican, told Fox News this week that his Secret Service experience qualifies him to handle the rough-and-tumble of the upper chamber.

“That job is high stress, high octane all the time and they force leadership on you,” he explained. “They don’t tolerate fools…If you don’t make it, you’re broken pretty quickly.”

Bongino spent three years protecting Bush and two years for Obama. He says Obama was a “wonderful guy” and that his political ideological differences with him aren’t personal.

But Bongino’s mission to defeat Cardin won’t be easy.

The freshman senator had a 48 percent overall approval rating in May 2010, according to the Washington Post. But congressional approval hit a new low at 12 percent, according to an Associated Press-GFK poll last month – a figure that Bongino will likely try to seize on.

Cardin’s camp, however, isn’t showing any signs of worry.

“The senator looks forward to having a debate about the issues with whoever the Republican nominee will be in 2012,” Cardin campaign spokeswoman Shelly Hettleman told FoxNews.com.

One of the issues that most certainly will be debated is Maryland’s new law offering in-state tuition breaks to certain illegal immigrants. The law was suspended last summer after opponents collected tens of thousands of signatures to force the issue onto the 2012 ballot for a referendum.

Bongino, whose wife legally emigrated from Colombia to the United States, said it’s not an immigration issue.

“It’s an issue about the law,” he said, comparing the process of obtaining citizenship to joining a club.

“We have rules,” he said. “Is citizenship worth something or is it now? Well it is worth something. It’s worth fighting for.”

Bongino said his grandfather fought in World War II and his uncle, who died fighting in the Vietnam War, was awarded the Bronze Star for valor.

“People fought and died for this country. It’s worth something,” he said. “This is our club. All we’re asking, just follow the rules. My wife did. It’s not complicated. It was a touching moment to watch her pledge allegiance to our flag.”

Source By Stephen Clark

A Beginner’s Guide to the Debt Ceiling Debate July 23, 2011

Posted by seeineye in : Politics , add a comment

The Talmud says: “One should not extravagantly distribute more than one fifth of one’s income to charity.” Are the sages saying there’s a ceiling cap on giving charity? Yes they are, because if everyone were to give too much away there would be too many mouths to feed.

If you have been getting information from the mainstream media you may think tea partiers are forcing Republicans in Congress to; cut the budget so much people will be forced to push grandma’s wheelchair off a cliff or, are trying force the country into default guaranteeing Obama won’t be reelected.

Not true! It’s all about not having too many mouths to feed.

The debt ceiling’s the congressionally approved amount the federal government can borrow. The ceiling is currently set at $14.294 trillion. The country’s debt hit that figure on May 16 and we are currently approaching $14.6 trillion in debt. Thanks to some “re-arranging,” the Treasury Department says we won’t “run out of money” until August 2.

The MSM and progressive politicians report if the debt ceiling isn’t raised by August 2, a biblical-type disaster will occur, wrath of God type stuff; fire and brimstone falling from the skies! Rivers boiling! Earthquakes, volcanoes, Human sacrifice, nothing but Dennis Kuchinich speeches on your TV set … mass hysteria (that premise is false)!

The Treasury has enough incoming money from taxes to pay interest on the debt, Social Security, Medicare, military salaries, etc., without raising the debt limit. We would have to cut back about 40% of spending, not enviable but also not the disaster we’re being warned about.

Some claim this would never have happened if Republicans didn’t gain control of the House in the 2010 elections. They’re absolutely correct, because no one wanted to deal with the issue.

We’ve had this major debt problem for years. The problem accelerated when George Bush took over as President but that was nothing compared to the past two and a half-years under the administration of Barack Obama. Our present Chief Executive is spending money faster than Imelda Marcos at a shoe store.

In eight years as President, George Bush increased the national debt by $5.038 trillion dollars, a record which is only surpassed Barack Obama who’s responsible for spending which increased the debt by $3.9 trillion, he is asking for an increase of another $2.4 trillion taking us through Obama’s first term, a total of $6.3 trillion. It will take just four years for Barack Obama to increase the federal debt by 25% more than George Bush did in eight years.

The non-partisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO) recently reported if we don’t fix our debt fast, it’ll become so burdensome our lawmaker’s ability to make tax and spending priorities will be limited, as will their reduce flexibility to deal with recessions, adding our high debt will make recessions more likely and long term growth less likely.

Our debt problem has been kicked down the road by both parties for too long, if not fixed soon according to the CBO; there will be “too many mouths to feed.”

The debt has become a big issue, not solely to the tea party but for the mainstream voting public.

Rasmussen reports 85% of likely voters are closely following the debt issue. By a margin of 52%-37% voters believe it would be worse for Congress not to significantly cut the deficit than not to raise the debt limit. A margin of 55% -34% voters oppose fixing the debt even partially via taxation feeling increased taxes will slow the economy.

A “perfect storm” has caused the debt issue to blow up now.

Many Congressional freshmen were elected based on promises to fix the debt problem. Until these freshmen insisted on keeping their promises no one in Congress or the administration agreed to discuss major spending cuts.

The GOP-controlled House passed a budget for the next fiscal, however for the second straight year the Democratic-controlled Senate hasn’t offered a budget. It’s hard to negotiate when the other side hasn’t made a counter-offer. Obama’s original budget was a budget-buster and was voted down by the Senate 97-0.

The House offered to increase the debt limit, if each dollar of increase was matched by a dollar of spending cut. They’re also looking to pass a balanced budget amendment feeling that legislators will never have the political will to balance the without the constitution forcing them (based on the track record, that’s a good bet).

The only thing Obama offered was vague promises. During his recent press conferences he refused to offer any specifics of his plan. The reason behind his refusal is there aren’t any specifics

Obama threatens to veto any plan not including tax increases (or closing loopholes which in effect is the same thing). He added he won’t sign a short-term debt limit increase, but that’s he offered.

This brings us to today.

Most Americans of either party are proud that our government offers safety nets for the sick, aged, needy, etc. However the federal debt has so large soon the system will collapse as the Talmud warns, because there will be too many mouths to feed.

The GOP is offering a solution which seems to comply with the public’s wishes; the progressives are refusing to present a plan. They’re simply using the GOP offering as an opportunity to take political potshots. Whether you agree with the GOP or not, logic dictates in order for them to “compromise,” the other side has to present an alternative.

That’s what this debate is about, not a refusal to compromise, but a refusal to lay one’s cards out on the table.

NY-26: Heads you win, tails we lose May 23, 2011

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Spin cycle nearly complete…

The special congressional election in western New York’s 26th district is down to the final few days and, as we previously predicted, it’s turning out to be a mess. Republican Jane Corwin is fighting a two front battle in the traditionally GOP heavy district. Democrat Kathy Hochul is attacking from one side, trying to pin Corwin’s ears back by tying her to the “Paul Ryan is going to destroy Medicare” meme. On the other front, fake Tea Party candidate Jack Davis is siphoning off votes from voters who haven’t been following the news. No matter how this nail biter turns out, Roll Call concludes that it’s almost a no-win situation for the GOP.

Republican strategists are now praying that they never, ever have another special election in New York state.

First they failed to win a 2009 special election to take back Democrat Kirsten’s Gillibrand’s open seat (which they won back last year). Then, later that year, they lost the open seat in New York’s 23rd district, which had been represented by Republican John McHugh.

And now, with the special election in New York’s 26th district just five days away, Democrat Kathy Hochul has at least an even-money chance of swiping a seat Democrats never figured they could win.

The problem for Republicans is that even if GOP Assemblywoman Jane Corwin comes back to win the special election in a district that was Sen. John McCain’s (R-Ariz.) best in the state — a district he carried by 6 points over Barack Obama — nobody will care.

While depressing, they make a fair point. If Corwin prevails on Tuesday, the general response will likely be, “Oh, that’s nice. You managed to carry an R+7 district. Yawn.” But if they lose, this race will become the Democrats’ poster child advertisement about how the “Republican wave is over” and “Paul Ryan has doomed the GOP for 2012.”

Plus, the GOP still hold a very substantial majority in the House. One seat more or less isn’t going to make tsunami level headlines. But that doesn’t mean it’s not worth the effort. As a final reminder, all of the money pouring into the race can do a lot, but nothing replaces good old fashioned GOTV boots on the ground in the last five days. If you know anyone in or near the 26th, it might be a good time to get hold of them, hook them up with the Corwin campaign, and give them something to occupy their time this weekend. (At least until they get Raptured.)

Coming up: a Senate vote on ObamaCare April 11, 2011

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by Barry Carr


One of the more intriguing parts of the budget deal announced late last night was a commitment from Harry Reid to allow two floor votes on Republican legislative priorities, both of which would never have otherwise seen in the Senate chamber before 2013.  The first is the effort to defund Planned Parenthood, a rider that got stripped out of last night’s final compromise, which would have an uncertain future in the Senate anyway.   The second, though, holds a great deal more promise, and a great deal of political risk for Democrats:

House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, agreed to remove the Planned Parenthood provision in exchange for an agreement that would allow Congress to take up the funding issue separately.The Republicans also won inclusion of a provision that will require the Senate to vote on a bill to de-fund the health care reform law.

This codicil didn’t even get a mention in other news reports, but could be one of the more significant aspects of the agreement.  The House has already worked on a bill to repeal ObamaCare, which before now had absolutely no chance of consideration while Harry Reid ran the Senate.  As we repeatedly pointed out during the election, repeal of ObamaCare will be impossible until at least 2013, when we have an opportunity to elect and install a new President who will sign such a bill, even had we won control of the Senate.

So this isn’t important because it holds some new hope for a quicker repeal.  Rather, it forces Democrats to defend the massive government expansion of control yet again, this time closer to the 2012 election.  Democrats didn’t run on ObamaCare in 2010, except in reliably liberal districts for House races, and the last thing they need in an already-difficult cycle is another reminder to voters of the unpopular program.  By forcing a floor vote in this agreement, Reid will have to get his caucus — now reduced to 53 rather than 59 — to entirely back ObamaCare in a new vote.

That means Senators like Bill Nelson in Florida will have to back it, even with the latest Quinnipiac poll showing voters there opposing it 41/49 more than a year after its rollout.  Jon Tester in Montana will have to explain yet again to his constituents why he wants the IRS to be health-insurance cops.  Claire McCaskill already has enough problems in Missouri, as does Ben Nelson in Nebraska.  Even Democrats running for re-election in 2014 — like Mary Landrieu of Louisiana and Mark Pryor in Arkansas — will have to go back on the record to support it in order to keep the repeal from passing Congress, and that comes after the clear expression of voter disapproval in last year’s midterms.

Of course, even if that happened, Obama would veto it, but that creates problems for him as well.  If Democrats peel away from ObamaCare and he has to veto it to keep it in place, he suddenly looks very extreme and out of touch.  He’d have to explain why his only real legislative accomplishment has become so toxic that his own party doesn’t back it any more, which would put him even further on the defensive and eliminate the “GOP used scare tactics” defense of ObamaCare that he’ll undoubtedly use on the campaign trail.

Frankly, I’m surprised Reid and Obama agreed to this.  This has zero upside for Democrats heading into 2012, and looks like a political trap.

Many believe Reid will renege on his promise, but that would also be political suicide.  Reid already has proven inept in budgeting matters, and if he breaks an agreement now, there will be hell to pay on the campaign trail in 2012 for it.  That will be an NRSC ad in every Senate race, asking voters whether they want to send a Democrat to the Senate and leave a lying welcher in charge.

More conflicts of interest in ObamaCare? April 8, 2011

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by Barry Carr

Can mainstream news organizations provide fair and objective coverage of public policy when the laws in question put federal subsidies directly into their pockets?  The Washington Post and CBS will have to answer that question after the Daily Caller reported today that both companies are receiving six-figure sums from ObamaCare.  One Republican in the House called on both news outlets to identify their conflicts of interest:

Two mainstream news organizations are receiving hundreds of thousands of taxpayer dollars from Obamacare’s Early Retiree Reinsurance Program (ERRP) — a $5 billion grant program that’s doling out cash to companies, states and labor unions in what the Obama administration considers an effort to pay for health insurance for early retirees. The Washington Post Company raked in $573,217 in taxpayer subsidies and CBS Corporation secured $722,388 worth of Americans’ money.

“It is fine with me if they continue covering the ObamaCare debate,” said Rep. Marsha Blackburn, Republican of Tennessee, in an e-mail to The Daily Caller. “When NBC used to cover energy issues, they identified themselves as a subsidiary of General Electric. CBS and Washington Post just have to disclose that they are subsidiaries of the Obama Administration.”

The ERRP, which Republicans call a slush fund, provides taxpayer money to Obama administration-selected states, companies and labor unions with already-in-place early retiree health insurance programs, and aims to make certain that their employees who retire early still have health insurance coverage before they reach Medicare eligibility age. Almost $2 billion of the $5 billion fund, which was supposed to last until 2014, has already been distributed to corporations. New projections expect the funding to run out before the end of 2012, if not sooner.

In the first place, it doesn’t work, as other companies have dumped retiree coverage because the incentives turn negative under ObamaCare.  Its funding had no rational basis for calculation, and Congress appeared to decide on $5 billion because that number happened to fit their political agenda.

But have these two news organizations covered the problems with retiree coverage in ObamaCare?  On the Washington Post website, a search for ERRP returns … nothing.  Under its full name, the Post only has one entry, a blog post from Ezra Klein last week acknowledging that the ERRP has already gone broke — a link to a Politico story.  At CBS, there are likewise no entries for a search on “ERRP”, and a single entry under the full name from August of last year — and that is only a link to the Obama administration’s website touting ObamaCare.

It looks like the Post and CBS aren’t interested in covering the fact that ERRP was grossly underfunded and wound up failing to protect existing coverage.  Gee, I wonder why that might be?