Friday, June 15, 2007

I've Noticed Something Interesting About the Left

How come none of them really "stick up" for Harry Reid? Honestly, Reid is supposed to be one of the top Democrats in all of American politics. He's the Senate Majority Leader. The man who was going to march right up to George W. Bush and the GOP and stick it to 'em. He was going to say "damn the minority" right alongside of Nancy Pelosi and eliminate the conservative cause.

Now he's under serious attack from conservatives for his grandstanding tactics and weasel-like demeanor. How come you don't see Dems coming to his defense?

Oh, wait, I forgot...this is probably why. Even the Dems think he's a disappointment.

Heh, sorry for beating a dead horse, I couldn't resist :)

Palestine is Getting Uglier

So Hamas has taken control of the Gaza Strip, and has effectively cut themselves off from the West Bank. Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, a member of Fatah, has now resigned himself to controlling only half of Palestine, while the glorified terrorists in Hamas celebrate their victory in Gaza. Citizens poured out into the streets after the end of 5 days of fighting. One would be led to believe that the citizens are fully behind the extremist movement.

However, maybe they're not behind Hamas because they believe in what Hamas is attempting to accomplish. I found this quote by a man, who only goes by "Yousef", very fascinating, because it explains why normal citizens are apparently behind Hamas at this point.

"'Today everybody is with Hamas because Hamas won the battle. If Fatah had won the battle they'd be with Fatah. We are a hungry people, we are with whoever gives us a bag of flour and a food coupon,' said Yousef, 30. 'Me, I'm with God and a bag of flour.'"

That says a lot about the situation in Palestine right now.

The Fear of Fred

The media has it, the other GOP candidates have it, and many Democrats have it. Today, Melanie Morgan further exposes it.

She talks briefly about the Reagan Democrats that are coming to side with Thompson on many left-wing blogs. She also notes that many GOP candidates are trying put an end to the momentum of a Fred Thompson candidacy before it officially takes off.

Mostly, though, Morgan exposes the left-wing MSM's fear of Fred Thompson. She quotes Richard Cohen's piece in the Washington Post about how "Thompson Is No Reagan", where Cohen practically whines about Thompson's lack of "name association" with any real pieces of legislation during his tenure in Congress.

Morgan counters by showing what "name association" has done for current members of Congress. For instance, the backlash that John Kyl is facing in his home state of Arizona and the ruining of John McCain's presidential aspirations (not to mention the backlash faced by Trent Lott and Lindsey Graham in their respective states, too).

Senate Majority Leader Harry "White Flag" Reid is known for leading the attempts to censure the minority during the immigration bill debate and telling our troops that they've lost in Iraq. What has that earned Reid? Well, it's earned him a robust 19% approval rating.

Morgan ends her poignant argument by quoting a critique of Ronald Reagan that sounds eerily familiar to Cohen's statements about Thompson. What makes it more interesting is that the critique was written by, who else, Richard Cohen. I'll leave you with Morgan's final words of the article...

"...time will tell if Thompson is the kind of conservative leader many of us are hoping for.
But it speaks well of Fred Thompson that the best arguments his critics can come up with are the same tired and hollow complaints they lodged against Ronald Reagan a quarter of a century ago

Truer words have never been spoken.

For My Fellow Fashionable Conservatives...

If you haven't seen this site, go to it. Trust me, you'll thank me later. I'm already creating a long wish list from here. It's got some great stuff for conservatives who want to wear there conservatism proudly.

No, no, no!!!

Harry Reid's bringing back the immigration bill that just won't die.

The problem is, if this bill gets passed, this will be a blow to those pushing for more serious border control, as their positions will be weakened by this "compromise"

Despite all of the statistics that show that Americans believe this immigration bill won't work, some are still pushing this bill as some sort of great accomplishment. Or, as amnesty proponent Lindsey "sell out" Graham puts it...

“It’s not that I know more than they do, it’s that I don’t give a sh*t.”

That's right, and if voters don't give a sh*t about you next November, don't be surprised.

I Was Born in a State Full of Idiots least unethical, moronic Democrats.

For those who don't know, I'm originally from the state of Maryland. I lived in "inside-the-Beltway" places like Takoma Park, Mount Rainier, and College Park to name a few.

Anyway, in 2002, the state elected a magnificent governor by the name of Robert Ehrlich. Not only was Ehrlich a Republican in a very "blue" state, but he was the first Republican governor since Spiro Agnew in 1967!

He instituted all kinds of initiatives that have made Maryland a better state. He pushed legislation to clean up the Chesapeake Bay, increase funding for public schools like never before in the state's history (most of the funds were diverted to schools in poorer areas, too), created a cabinet post for disabilities (the first of it's kind in America), reinstituted the death penalty, and vetoed a health-care bill that Democrats supported but was ruled illegal anyway by a federal judge. In 2005, Ehrlich fired a staffer for spreading false rumors on the internet about former Baltimore mayor Martin O'Malley (a hardcore Democrat), because he didn't want to play dirty politics.

in 2006, the smug and pompous O'Malley ran for governor against Ehrlich. Ehrlich, at the time, was drawing approval ratings in the high 50's. However, because Martin O'Malley had a big "D" next to his name...he won, 52.7-46.2 over the incumbent Ehrlich.

Since then, Martin O'Malley has done nothing to help the state of Maryland. He promised to stop the rate increases in electricity bills for Maryland citizens...and within 5 months, he attempted (unsuccessfully) to increase the rates 50 percent.

O'Malley also pushed through legislation that guarantee's Maryland's electoral votes to whoever wins the national popular vote in the presidental elections...even if the popular vote in Maryland goes to a different candidate. He has basically given Maryland residents no reason to vote in presidential elections.

Now, in further proof of O'Malley's lack of ethics, he recently fired a state worker because of that worker's ties to former Gov. Ehrlich...but that firing has since been ruled illegal.

Needless to say, my birth-state really knows how to pick 'em...every 35-40 years or so.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

DPV Shows a Total Lack of Class

As posted at Pravda...err, I mean RK, the Democratic Party of Virginia sent out this "memo" to the Republican Party of Virginia.

In it, the DPV tells whoever will become the new chair of the party how to "fix the mess" that they say has been left behind by previous chair Ed Gillespie. Of course, their first priority is that the Virginia GOP should just do as the Democrats say...

First of all...which party holds the majority in the General Assembly? Secondly, which party is responsible for at least half of the governmental gridlock? And third, and most importantly of all, which party is currently having it's own problems controlling it's members?

Clean up your own mess first, you have plenty of them.


Bearing Drift has the RPV's reply, which is GOLD!

Can't Buy What's Not For Sale

Especially when it's the public's opinion of this unfortunately-not-dead immigration capitulation. George W. Bush, however, thinks differently.

Bush wants to add a proposal to this amnesty bill that provides $4.4 billion in immediate border control enforcement. This $4.4 billion is supposedly to be paid off from the fees that illegals pay for citizenship and the penalties paid by employers of illegal aliens. Unsurprisingly, John Kyl and Lindsey Graham support this.

While that is a first step of a 10,000 mile journey towards a real piece of immigration legislation, it doesn't say whether or not the current border security budget will eventually increase, decrease, or stay the same...and nobody seems to want to provide an answer to that, either.

I still maintain that I like Fred Thompson's plan, secure the border FIRST, reform the legal path of immigration so it is more efficient...and at the same time deport any and all illegals that we capture in these workplace raids or that are arrested for other crimes. THEN, after all that, we can figure out how to deal with the remaining group of illegal aliens in our nation.

All Is Abnormally Quiet in Israel Right Now

Because Palestine has erupted in civil war...which means that instead of the factions attacking Israel, they're attacking each other.

Militants from both Hamas and Fatah are fighting in the streets, and Hamas has captured Fatah headquarters in two cities.

It's gotten to the point that President Mahmoud Abbas is going to dissolve the Palestinian National Authority's government and declare a State of Emergency. Abbas is also going to call for the deployment of a multinational force in Gaza, and will appoint an independent politician to take the place of Prime Minister Ismail Hamiyeh, who is part of Hamas.

Hamas is the most rabidly anti-Israeli faction in the Palestinian government. They are driven by their religion, and are also against the secular Palestinian National Authority. Their goal is eradicate the Israeli state and spread the "banner of Islam" over all of Palestine. While they claim to be a "liberation movement", their tactics of suicide bombs, car bombs, and the like have earned them the designation of an indentified terrorist faction.

Things have gone beyond dicey over there, it's all out war now.

230 Years of Glory, Beauty, and Honor

Today is Flag Day. In honor of the most glorious symbol of freedom and liberty, here's a short retrospective of "Old Glory"

The Grand Union flag flown on Prospect Hill. January 1, 1776

The "Betsy Ross" flag, adopted by the Continental Congress on June 14, 1777

20 star flag, right after the Louisiana Purchase, 1818.

The U.S. Flag at the turn of the 20th century, 45 stars

The current 50-star flag.

Should we ever have a 51st state added to the Union, this is the proposed flag.

Happy Birthday, Old Glory.

Angelina Jolie Supports Freedom of the Press, Kinda Sorta...

Brad Pitt's sexpot squeeze really knows how to contradict herself.

In the movie "A Mighty Heart", Jolie plays Mariane Pearl, the widow of Daniel Pearl. If you remember, Pearl was the reporter from the Wall Street Journal who was kidnapped and decapitated by pro-Taliban extremists in Pakistan.

The premiere of the film was last night, and it was meant to support the organization "Reporters Without Borders".

However, last night, Jolie placed a huge fence around her borders, and journalists were told to sign a contract before speaking with Angelina. In the contract, it stated that...

- The interview could only be for the purpose of promoting the film.
- No part of the interview could be used in conjunction with any other stories about Angelina.
- No questions about Jolie's personal life, if these questions are asked, Jolie can terminate the interview immediately.
- If any violations occurred, the tape of the interview would not be released to the interviewer.
- Also, if any violations occurred, it would "cause Jolie irreparable harm" and would open up the possibility of lawsuits from Jolie against the interviewer.

Jolie initially told Paramount Pictures to ban all Fox News affiliates from covering the premiere. Paramount declined to oblige. What's interesting is that Fox News Channel reviewed the movie when it premiered at Cannes, and showered the movie (and Jolie's performance) with praise and positive remarks.

Reporters from USA Today, Associated Press, and other news organizations declined to sign the agreement. As one reporter asked, "Who does she think she is?"

Of course, given that she orchestrates the photos of her and her kids in People magazine...and has supported such dictators like former Namibian President Sam Nujoma, who heavily censors the press in his nation (calling them "the enemy", among other things), it's not surprising that Jolie also wants to censor the press around her for her own image.

What a surprise, another Hollywood elitist who crows about conservatives "taking away our freedoms"...contradicting themselves left and right.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Undergoing Slight Renovations

Just a note: I will be tinkering with the look of The Podium for the next day or two. I'm not so keen on the look of the site. If nothing else, because it resembles GOTV and TwoConservatives very closely. While resembling TwoCon's is not a bad thing...GOTV is so overtly anti-conservative anything that I figure that I might want to distinguish the look of my site a bit more.

Maybe I'll add a banner, change the colors around...something. The Podium needs a little more spice in it's look.

And if nothing works, we'll just stick with the current scheme and be done with it.

Let me know what you think in the comments section below...

Hey, look...a FIGHT!

Just when you thought intra-party spats were for Republicans only...

I wonder if anything will come of this bubbling cauldron of discontent between George Burke and RK's infamous Lowell...still, it's always more fun to watch liberals fight amongst themselves.

"Why THEY fear Fred"

In a column, Kevin McCullough talks about why Fred Thompson is so popular, and why the rest of the candidates on both sides of the aisle fear him. However, I think the best part of this article is highlighting why people like Fred and why he appeals to so many people...

"Chalk it up to a heaping portion of old fashioned, southern deep fried, common sense, with more than a ladle full likeability, and topped off with a wink and a smile. He's also tough as nails, and when big daddy walks into the room - everyone knows it.

Yet I think it goes way deeper than this.

Evangelicals like him because he reflects their values and eliminates any need to even attempt to bridge the debate between Mormons and... well... Evangelicals.

The anti-terror vote likes him because while Mayor Giuliani may talk a tough game, nobody on earth thinks you could mess with Papa Bear. (He's even already articulated strategies towards Iran, North Korea, and the future of what is at stake in Iraq were the terrorists to win.)

Fiscal conservatives like him because he has the audacious understanding that in order to keep economic progress moving forward, unemployment at near record lows, highest African American ownership of homes in the history of our nation, etc. etc. - you must reduce not inflate taxes.

Border security types like him because he said what Washington refused to hear on the original debate over the amnesty reform bill in the Senate: 'THEY DON'T GET IT! Secure the border through enforcement first, and then deal with the issue of who is here.'

He's poked fun at Al Gore by demonstrating fact over consensus on global warming. He has also poked a bit of fun at the president of Mexico for trying to make "his citizens his nation's greatest export." He even called out Michael Moore by puffing cigar smoke right back in his face.

Unlike Hillary who went on a "listening tour" with voters who primarily told her what she wanted to hear, Fred is listening to the Hoover Institution, the Heritage Foundation, and readers.

He is the best communicator the GOP field has had in its ranks since Reagan ran for re-election. He is equally at ease with shoppers from Wal-Mart as much as a state dinner with Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice. (Who wouldn't be a bad Veep nomination for him.)"

That sums it up pretty well. He's liked by so many circles...and as McCullough states further, those who give you reasons not to vote for Fred either have ties to other candidates or have invested a lot of time in promoting other candidates.

Big "tip-of-the-hat" to Fred-head and co-worker of mine, Paul Cave, for providing me with the link to this.

Fred Thompson on "The Tonight Show"

Go to Hot Air for the clip and read the comments in the open thread from last night, a pretty good commentary and discussion.

He hit his marks, made a few good jokes without being silly, and further staked his claim as a front-runner for the GOP nomination. He also stated that he WANTS the job of President. That should subdue those who say that he doesn't really want to be President of the United States.

Thompson was strong in his statements, should've picked a different colored suit, and overall continued to solidify his status as a credible nominee.

Pump Your Brakes, Waldo...

According to Waldo Jaquith, 24% of Americans "don't know their ass from their elbow."

Why? Well, it's because 24% of Americans in a recent gallup poll believe in both creationism and evolution. Now, to Waldo, this apparently makes no sense.

To me, it does...because I'm a part of that 24%.

Now, I'm not going to sit here and force my religious beliefs upon you. However, I do believe that God created the universe. I also believe that The Bible is not interpreted in the proper context. I believe that some things are to be taken as "the word", while others should be interpreted as a lesson, or a guideline. Did God create the universe in 6 days? Well, maybe he did. Or maybe he didn't. That would explain the aging of the planet, dinosaurs, and other scientific findings.

Also, isn't it taught that, to God, a million years is but a second to him? Given that logic, how many years are in 6 of God's days?

Think about it...using that math alone, that means that God created the universe in 518,400,000,000 Earth years, then rested for 86,400,000,000 years.

Now, I'm not saying that this is true and that's how things are. You are open to your own interpretation of how the universe was created. However, I think it is entirely plausible that God could have very well created the universe, and allowed for evolution.

God knew that when he created human beings, they would be very curious in nature. So it makes sense that he would give us something to be curious about (dinosaurs, fossils, etc...)

I have other beliefs on this, as well. However, I'm just espousing my counterpoint to Waldo, who believes that I, and many other Americans, simply don't know our asses from our elbows.

I simply think that those who make such comments have closed minds to other theories or might be uncomfortable and lack confidence in their own beliefs. Then again, maybe they don't want to believe anything else. I guess they are entitled to that, too.

The Aftermath of the 24th State Senate Primary

Well, it's over. If you haven't heard by now, Emmett Hanger defeated Scott Sayre in yesterday's primary in a very close race. The final tally was 53.00% for Hanger, 46.99% for Sayre.

It was a close race, with each candidate winning their fair share of precincts and localities. In fact, out of the 9 cities and counties within the district, Sayre won 5 of them. Hanger simply managed to win large majorities in the larger localities, such as the City of Staunton and Augusta County.

Now, many people are speculating that the Bloggers4Sayre may have been Sayre's downfall, especially in Augusta and Staunton. It is certainly a valid discussion, though some will disagree with that sentiment. Here's what I think...

While a couple of the pro-Sayre bloggers and their actions turned me off to endorsing Sayre, he was a fine candidate on the issues. I think that many voters were attracted to this primary due to the noise created by the Sayre bloggers. Their loud and proud activism for Sayre got the attention of newspapers and the statewide bloggers who normally would have dismissed this primary due to it's location "out in the valley" and focused solely on the NoVa, Tidewater, and Richmond area races.

While some may have been like me, and felt pushed away by some of the more overzealous supporters...they did make me take a closer look at the candidate himself, and where he stands on various issues. I think that those who were on the fence, and weren't caught in any of the venom spit back and forth by various bloggers, were drawn to find out who this Sayre guy was and what did he stand for.

I think that, above all, is what gave Sayre an advantage in this primary and allowed him to almost upset a well-entrenched and popular incumbent in Emmett Hanger.

The SWAC bloggers seem to be very proud of what they've done to help Scott Sayre, and bring a more vocal, staunchly conservative voice to the district. I think they should be proud of their efforts, as attempting to unseat Emmett Hanger was not going to be an easy task. However, even in defeat, there was success...47% of the voters wanted a change in how their representative voted in the General Assembly, and hopefully Emmett Hanger will listen should he be re-elected.

Also, I think that this also bodes well for Libertarian Arin Sime, whom The Podium is endorsing. Sime runs on many of the same platforms that the Sayre supporters pushed. This race in the 24th is far from over...unless you're David Cox, but that's just my opinion.

Should be an interesting summer and fall.

To the Sayre bloggers, I tip my hat to you...we may not have agreed on tactics, but your efforts should not go without notice or appreciation.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Reminder: Tune in to "Virginia Viewpoints" Tonight!

As noted previously, yours truly will be a member of the panel on this month's "Virginia Viewpoints", which will air on WVPT at 7:30 and 10:30 pm tonight.

Click here to find WVPT in your area.

Unrelated note: as 7 pm looms and the primary results will start pouring in...there is constant rumbling of thunder in the skies above me. A sign of turmoil to come in our state? We shall soon find out.

Byron Dorgan Speaking the Truth

Courtesy of The News Buckit.

This clip of Byron Dorgan (D-ND) speaking about the unfortunately-not-completely-dead Immigration Bill sums up a lot of the reasons why the majority of Americans are against this bill. The fact that it is a Democrat speaking shows that it is NOT the fault of conservatives that this bill failed. It is the bill's fault that it was a piece of junk, and it is also Harry Reid's fault, because he was being a pompous weasel (as usual).

And Rosie's Replacement on "The View" is...

...da-dada, Whoopi Goldberg.

Well, even though Whoopi is a liberal, she is a definite improvement over Rosie O'Donnell. At least Whoopi doesn't pretend to be an authority on issues when she isn't. I may not agree with Whoopi, but at least she speaks in a calm, civil tone (compared to Rosie's rants, raves, and blabbering), and will not find ways to infuriate people simply because they crave attention.

Hopefully, they'll replace Joy Behar with another person who knows how to discuss topics instead of blabber on aimlessly. I wonder how interesting the discussions between Elisabeth Hasselbeck and Whoopi will be, given that we'll at least something resembling civility on "The View".

My guess, ratings will go's unfortunate that general lunacy = ratings.

At least we won't hear any stupid 9/11 conspiracy theory rants, or hearts bleeding over false and insanely-bloated statistics of civilian deaths in Iraq.

Now, why can't they find a 2nd conservative to pair up with Hasselbeck...oh, wait, I forgot, the MSM is involved. Silly me.

Return of the Reagan Democrats to the Right?

As reported as Virginia Virtucon, the Democratic National Committee website shut down the comments section after posting an attack column on some of Fred Thompson's recently foreign policy statements.

Out of 13 individual comments (I discounted repeats), 9 different people (all self-proclaimed Democrats) stated agreement with Thompson's comments.

As VV said, looks like the "Reagan Democrats" feel right at home with Fred Thompson.

The Ultimate Flip-Flop - Al Gore

That's right, take a look at this clip, courtesy of Hot Air.

Here's a synopsis for you. The clip is from 1992. Al Gore has recently become Bill Clinton's running mate against Bush 41. Gore is speaking as a definite "blue hawk" here. In his speech, he basically states that Bush 41 lied by minimizing the threat Saddam posed to the world before the 1991 Gulf War. He also blames Bush for the lives lost in the Gulf War because Gore claims that Bush Sr. and Ronald Reagan allowed Saddam to become a menace, a developer of WMD's, and that the Reagan and Bush Sr. administrations failed to acknowledge Saddam's ties to terrorists.

Let me emphasize something...Gore stated in that speech that Saddam Hussein was developing WMD's, a regional menace, and had operational ties to terrorists.

Now, here he is, 15 years later, and has been stating that Bush 43 lied by overstating the threat Saddam posed to the world. Gore is one of many that say that Saddam had no ties to terrorists, was not pursuing WMD's, and was not a real threat to the region.

That, my friends, is the ULTIMATE flip-flop. Where's the mainstream media to report on this, now???

Primary Day Notes...

- Driving around Winchester/Frederick County before work and on my lunch break, I've stopped at a few polling places to talk to those working the polls for both Tate and Vogel in the 27th Senate district. The gist of what I'm getting from talking to these people is that voter turnout is low in this area, but hopes are high for both sides that this could play into their favor.

- According to The New Dominion, voter turnout is apparently higher than expected in the 24th Senate district

- Someone named "Outside Observer" noted at Not Larry Sabato that in the 9th Senate district, he has seen at least one person on a bike covered in Benny Lambert signs blasting LL Cool J out of a boombox. Kudos to the bike rider for good taste in music...

Updates as they come...

*ahem* We Have a Tie

That's right, folks. The "Fred"eral Express has chugged along...all the way to the top of the polls.

According to the latest Rasmussen Reports poll, Fred Thompson and Rudy Guiliani are now tied at the top of the GOP field at 24% each. The report details describe Thompson's rise to the top as "meteoric". Thompson is up a whopping 7 points since last week's poll.

Mitt Romney and John McCain are tied for 11% each, less than half of Thompson and Guiliani's numbers. Romney lost 4 points from last week's Rasmussen poll, McCain continues his downward slide, losing 3 points.

As of right now, this is slowly becoming a two-horse race...and that may be what the GOP needs right now, a thinning of the herd at the top.

On an even more glorious note, Harry Reid's approval ratings have sunk to 19%! In comparison, Dick Cheney has an approval rating of 38%, which is DOUBLE Reid's approval rating.

It's been a good morning, so far...

Monday, June 11, 2007

Mudcat in the Swampland

(h/t Sic Semper Tyrannis)

Current "rural liaison" for John Edwards (because Edwards can't bother to mess with rural areas himself) and former advisor to Jim Webb's campaign last fall, Dave "Mudcat" Saunders, has become a new contributor to's "Swampland" blog. He posted his first blog today, and had some interesting things to say. For instance...

"I have bitched and moaned for years about the lack of tolerance in the elitist wing of the Democratic Party, or what I refer to as the "Metropolitan Opera Wing". These are the people who talk of tolerance but the only true tolerance they ever exhibit is for their own pseudo-intellectual arrogance."

...he is not a fan of how the "Metropolitan Opera Wing" views rural citizens, either...

"I am certain I will get personally attacked for this next statement, but in all honesty, I don't care what the "Metropolitan Wing" of my party thinks. I don't like them. The damage the pseudo-intellectuals have done to my party by abandoning tolerance, combined with their erroneous stereotyping of my people and culture, is something that brings out my incivility...I must add that this same intellectual arrogance and intolerance overtook the party years ago, and for that very reason, my people in rural America left the tent."

...finally, he goes after a certain group of liberal bloggers...

"So to those bloggers who believe in a straight-forward dialogue and exchange of ideas, God bless you and thank you. Together, you're coming up with a lot of good stuff, and frankly, much of it has been helpful to me. At the same time, those Democratic bloggers, who have appointed themselves as intellectually superior and believe the only way to win an argument is to shot the loudest with personal attacks, you can go to Hell."

...I imagine some of the DailyKos crowd, and a few Virginia bloggers, are in the crosshairs of these comments.

Needless to say, if you read the comments below Saunders's post, there are a lot of angry Dems. Many of which sneer at "Mudcat" for being an "ignorant hillbilly", which goes back to what he was saying about the stereotypes the "Metropolitan Opera Wing" holds about people from rural areas.

It's an interesting read, to say the least.

Chuck Norris Outlines his Presidential Campaign Promises

I kid you not, read this.

Ok, it is a farce. However, the fact that Norris wrote this himself further enhances his "baddest man on the planet" status. Just so you know, Norris is a solid conservative, and a pretty funny guy. Here are a few of Norris's campaign promises:

- Cut spending by dismissing the Secret Service, at least for my eight years in office (why would I need them?).

- Give a presidential pardon to … no one, ever. Baretta was right in the '70s, "Don't do the crime, if you can't do the time. Don't do it!"

-Turn the Rose Garden into a new fighting ring for the World Combat League, in which liberals and conservatives will fight for legislative leadership and priority. (For fun, Saturday night fights will feature a recurring bout between Hannity and Colmes). "American Idol" already told me they will provide the entertainment.

- Increase jobs in America by sending ninja teams to sabotage and steal them back from other countries.

- Convey my plan for world peace to the United Nations: taking the governor of California with me on our "kick butt and ask questions later" USO world tour.

- Bring on Donald Trump as my apprentice. When my presidential term is complete and he has obtained his black belt, or whichever comes first, he can buy the White House and of course rename it (to, what else, "The Trump House").

However, Norris has two promises he places above all...

- Personally smoke out bin Laden by myself and round-house kick him all the way back to America, where my United Fighting Arts Federation will handle the justice issues.

- Make all Chuck Norris facts come true (well, not quite all of them – I'm a happily, married man!)

Awesome. Totally Awesome.

Presidential Poll and 24th State Senate Poll

Being that the 24th State Senate GOP primary is tomorrow, The New Dominion has a poll up on it's website. Click your pick, Emmett Hanger or Scott Sayre.

Also, I am part of the PajamasMedia network, and I have a straw poll on the right hand side of my blog if you haven't seen it yet.

Weekly Podium: "Political Chop Suey"

(Cross-posted at The New Dominion)

With primary season in Virginia coming to a climax on Tuesday, the immigration bill currently on the shelf, and the first flurry of debates over…what is there to talk about? Well, there is plenty of “chop suey” (literal translation: “odds and ends”) in the political realm, both local and national.

For instance, the news that Barack Obama has sought the advice of former Secretary of State Colin Powell on foreign policy issues has caught the eyes of many who are closely following the presidential primaries. Powell previously served in both Bush administrations, and has always been associated with the Republican Party.

When asked about advising Obama, who is a Democrat, Powell said, “I've been around this town a long time and I know everybody who is running for office. And I make myself available to talk about foreign policy matters and military matters with whoever wishes to chat with me." Powell has ruled out running for any kind of an elected office, but also did not rule out a return to a post within a presidential administration.

For Obama, this is a great move on many levels. He is shoring up his foreign policy stances with advice from an excellent source of foreign policy advice. He is also working with a notable and popular conservative figure, which shows a willingness to work across party lines. Obama also will appeal to conservatives because Powell is a standout military figure, which also helps to distance him from the stereotype of liberals being weak on national security and military matters.

On a different note from the Democratic side of the presidential primaries, Democratic Party chairman Howard Dean stated that the “one way to truly ensure we end this war” was to elect a Democrat in November of 2008. The interesting aspect of that statement is the fact that it was carried by most major news sources as if it were a somewhat groundbreaking and unexpected statement.

Had Howard Dean actually said “vote for a Republican, it’s the best choice for America”, that would be groundbreaking and unexpected. It must be summer during a presidential primary season when statements from a national party chairman that support the candidates of his own party are considered relevant.

Joe Lieberman, who once-upon-a-time was Al Gore’s running mate, says that the United States needs to consider eventually conducting air strikes against Iran. Some are taking this as Lieberman endorsing war with Iran, while others believe it is simply Lieberman attempting to protect Israel due to his Jewish heritage. I personally believe that Lieberman was stating that we cannot completely dismiss the possibility of eventually striking Iran, as it is believed they are actively pursuing nuclear weapons.

Many Democrats have turned themselves off to Lieberman, as his foreign policy beliefs are more in line with the GOP than with the Democratic Party. I am inclined to believe that Lieberman is being sensible, and stating that we have to leave all options on the table…at least for the time being.

A recent Fox News/Opinion Dynamics poll stated that 58 percent of Americans believe that to stop illegal immigration, the United States needs to enforce current immigration laws. These percentages include 65 percent of Republicans, 62 percent of Independents, and 50 percent of Democrats. Only 34 percent of those polled believed the entire system requires an overhaul.

As I have espoused in the past, I do believe that the previous attempt at reform was a form of amnesty. I believe that, at least for the time being, we do need to enforce current immigration laws until we can create a better bill for updating the laws. A combination of stronger, smarter border security and more efficient methods for legal immigration into America are the way to go, in my opinion.

Some other interesting numbers from this survey include that 84 percent of those polled believe that Mexico should not shown preference in the number of immigrants allowed into America, and should be treated as any other nation. Also, 55 percent of Americans support the government raids on big businesses that employ large numbers of illegal immigrants, compared to only 34 that object to these raids.

Shrinking the scope down to the state level, the majority of the June primaries is upon us. One thing that is very notable about this year’s primaries is the fact that many moderate incumbents are facing serious challenges by more partisan candidates.

For instance, in the 24th State Senate GOP primary, you have Emmett Hanger being challenged by Scott Sayre. Sayre is positioning himself as the more conservative candidate, noting Hanger’s votes for tax increases and apparent support for in-state tuition for illegal immigrants. In the Democratic primary for the 9th State Senate seat, incumbent Benjamin Lambert is being challenged by Don McEachin. Lambert has drawn criticism for his endorsement of George Allen over Jim Webb in last year’s Senate race. McEachin has promoted himself to Democratic voters as “a Democrat you can trust”, putting him to the left of Lambert.

Another good example of this is in the Democratic primary in the 79th House of Delegates district. The current incumbent, Johnny Joannou is fighting for his party’s nomination against Henry Light, who has aligned himself as a “Warner/Kaine Democrat”. Joannou has also faced criticism from fellow Democrats for his alignment with House Republicans on many issues. This criticism has helped Light, who currently has raised nearly $200,000 more in campaign funds than Joannou.

With the exception of the 27th State Senate GOP primary between Jill Holtzman Vogel and Mark Tate, the June 12th primaries seem to be based around perceived moderates being attacked from either the left or the right, depending on the party primary that is in question. It makes me think of the campaigns of George W. Bush and Al Gore in 2000. I remember that, in the pre-9/11 climate that we lived in at the time, many people thought that the two candidates were interchangeable. They were seen as the type of candidates both parties would put up in the future; a moderate who only slightly leaned towards their party’s ideology.

Here we are, 7 years later, and it seems that both parties are attempting to move away from the center. While this is starting to show in the presidential debates we’ve seen on TV, it seems to be actively happening right here in the state of Virginia.

Finally, I want to talk about the primary in the 24th State Senate district that has caused so much controversy and political noisemaking. Some believe that the Republican Party in the Valley may suffer a long-term fracture due to this primary. With many of the local party chairs and bloggers rallying behind Scott Sayre, and Emmett Hanger collecting the support of many elected officials and a growing number of op-ed writers, it could very well seem like the party is heading for a split.

However, I know that at least few of the local party chairs have stated that they will support and work hard for the Republican candidate, no matter who wins. I believe that this is the start of reconciliation between the supporters of both Emmett Hanger and Scott Sayre. For the sake of the GOP in Virginia, this is a good start towards healing some of the fractures that are taking place. If the Republicans want to continue their majority in both the State Senate and the House of Delegates, they need to start mending these broken fences on June 13th.

Or else, they may find themselves in a position similar to their counterparts in Congress.

Excellent Piece on Fred Thompson Candidacy

Today, JB Williams wrote an excellent column on the Fred Thompson campaign, what it all means, and why he's already taking shots from both sides of the aisle.

To quote Williams on a few key statements...

- "Keep in mind that Dick Cheney had spent almost thirty years as the most bi-partisan respected man in Washington DC before becoming Vice President Dick Cheney, the most partisan hated and targeted man in Washington DC, all in a matter of a few politically charged moments.

The ink wasn't even dry on Fred Thompson's exploratory committee filing before shots were fired across his bow from both sides of the political aisle. Fear is a terribly ugly emotion… but ain't it fun."

- "Lefties hate him for being too right and Righties hate him for being, well, too right…as opposed to their recent record of being all wrong."

This is the key quote of the entire column...

"What has Thompson ever done to make so many so worried? That's easy to answer… Unlike every other contender, he is being drafted by the people, the same people who have rejected all others.

Rejection hurts, even if you're a politician. How must it feel to be the nation's "war hero" John McCain or the nation's Mayor, Rudy Giuliani, both of which have been looked at for years and drawn somewhere between a collective yawn and a "hell no" from the conservative base of their party, now certain what "compassionate conservative" means."

While I don't necessarily agree about Giuliani, I think he makes an interesting point.

Go give it a read.

(h/t to fellow Fred-head Paul Cave for the link)

Sunday, June 10, 2007

A Memorable Experience

On Friday, I took part in the taping for the upcoming episode of "Virginia Viewpoints." I was honored to have spent both the taping time, as well as a good chunk of time afterwards, discussing and debating the topic at hand.

Just so you know, we were discussing immigration. This was a topic that I believe we probably could have done about 100 hours worth of tapings on. I believe our panel was intelligent, our discussion was civil, and I would like to think that I contributed to the conversation.

The panel was as follows:

- Chris Graham - Host of "Virginia Viewpoints", he is also the editor of The New Dominion.
- Phil Chroniger - Author of this blog, of course, and columnist for The New Dominion.
- Linda Jones - A regular on "Virginia Viewpoints", formerly of the USAF.
- Rick Castaneda - Works in the ESL program for Harrisonburg City Schools and also a member of the Hispanic Council of Harrisonburg.
- Andrew Clem - He runs a well-known conservative blog and a Professor of Foreign Studies at JMU.

I won't give away too much, but the round table was pretty well split into a more conservative contingent (myself/Clem) and a more liberal contingent (Jones/Castaneda). However, it managed to provide a good wealth of varying opinions, and it was a productive 25 minutes...I just wish it could have gone longer! Hopefully, we'll get to revisit this topic in the near future. All of the panelists were a pleasure to work with, even if we have different views.

While at the studios, I got to meet finnegan of hburgnews, another Shenandoah Valley area blog that I frequent often. Another class act. In fact, all of the people involved were class acts.

Andrew Clem also commented upon his experience on "Virginia Viewpoints".

Remember, "Virginia Viewpoints" will air on Tuesday, June 12th at 7:30 and 10:30 pm on WVPT.