Battleground Pennsylvania

It’s on in the Keystone State. A new memo from the Romney campaign talks confirms:

Rendell: ‘Startling upset’ for Romney ‘a possibility’ in Pennsylvania
When Governor Ed Rendell made these comments last week, he was clearly sending a desperate call to Chicago for help in the Keystone State.  At the time, his comments were met with derision and scorn from the Obama High Command who were feeling secure in their own.

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While the Obama campaign would like to wish it is 2008, the reality is that they are now forced to “play defense” in least six states (Pennsylvania, Minnesota, Colorado, New Hampshire, Iowa and Wisconsin) that they once believed were “safe” Obama wins.

As the Romney-Ryan message continues to resonate and GOP momentum continues to build, we are adding Pennsylvania to the long list of states where we are expending significant resources in order to bring real recovery to the country, while continuing to implement and fund full-scale efforts in all the target states.

From Battleground Watch, we learn that both campaigns and Crossroads Super PAC are spending money and sending resources to Pennsylvania.

To me, this news is bigger than just Pennsylvania. Obama’s support from 2008 is eroding everywhere. Pennsylvania, while technically a swing state, has been reliably Democrat. Obama’s loss of support there is not happening independently of everywhere else. In my estimation, it can’t be this close in Pennsylvania without Mitt Romney having at least a small but comfortable lead in Ohio. With a week to go the Obama campaign shouldn’t have to be defending formerly safe territory. Clearly, the momentum still is in Mitt’s favor.

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Back in 2008, I privately knew that when John McCain pulled out of Michigan that disaster was coming. While Obama hasn’t officially pulled of any battleground states, word is the Obama campaign have diverted resources from swing states he was counting on (like Florida) for Ohio.

It may still come down to Ohio, and even there Mitt’s on the rise. But if Mitt can pull off a victory in Pennsylvania, Ohio won’t even matter.

Obama’s Failure, Media Attacks Romney

Here are some of the things we have learned in the past day.

Obama has apparently skipped intelligence briefings for the past week. A rather bizarre thing for the days leading up to the anniversary of September 11th.

Despite threats, the U.S. consulate in Libya was not guarded by U.S. Military.

The attacks appeared to be well coordinated and planned for the 9/11 anniversary.

Yet, somehow, the media has tried to turn this situation into a negative for Romney. Their efforts to do so turned to be as well coordinated as the attacks in Egypt and Cairo appeared to be.

Amazing isn’t it? Since Obama’s convention we’ve had an abysmal jobs report come out, a teachers’ strike in Obama’s hometown of Chicago and now this. Obama has had a rather terrible week, resulting from his bad policies, lack of leadership, inexperience and incompetence, and the media does everything it can to not hold him accountable.v

Obama Campaign Finds All Sorts of Ways To Avoid Spending Money

There has been a disturbing string of stories involving how Obama has managed to pass the financial burden of his campaign visits to other people.

Taxpayers, to start, have had to foot the bill for his fundraisers when Obama conveniently combines fundraising trips with official White House visits.

Today it was reveal that Obama’s campaign outright refused to cover the costs of a campaign visit to New Hamsphire, leaving the town of Dunham, already suffering in Obama’s economy, to figure out how to pay for everything involved in beefing up security for the visit. Lucky for the city, an anonymous donor came out to bail out the Obama campaign. Though this issue is far from settled, as this raises all sorts of question about in-kind contributions, and such.

A reality of a presidential campaign is that taxpayer funded resources are made available to a sitting president running for reelection. That said, there is a difference between uses those resources, and abusing them.

But telling a town to go screw, forcing them in an already bad economy that has been exasperated by Obama’s tenure to pull together an extra $20,000… that’s pretty low.

Despite Obama’s clever avoidance and outright refusal to pay campaign expenses, his campaign is spending more than it takes in.

Of course, if you are planning a wedding, you can forgo gifts and ask your guests to donate to his campaign instead… he needs it more than you, after all… despite his shifting the burden of his travel and security on the taxpayers and cash-strapped towns, his standings in the polls haven’t exactly improved.

UPDATE, by Mark Noonan:  Seems that Obama is sucking up so much Democrat money (and blowing through it so fast) that our Donks can’t raise enough money to pay for their Convention.

Someone tell me, again, how there are indicators that this will be a close-fought campaign and that the advantage is with Obama …

I Still Say Jeb Bush Was Right

It’s perhaps predictable that I, the guy who started Blogs For Bush back in 2003, would be defending Jeb Bush over comments he made this week suggesting that Ronald Reagan or George H. W. Bush would have hard time earning the Republican Party nomination today. Of course the thing is, I’ve been saying this for a while now, well before Jeb Bush said it this week.

So, yesterday I inserted my opinion into Cluster’s blog post on the subject, because I think it’s an issue worth intra-party discussion and reflection. Today, I have to respond to another piece on the subject, my friend S.E. Cupp’s commentary in the New York Daily News.

S.E. Cupp, like many other conservatives, took offense to Jeb’s comments, suggesting that Jeb switch parties if he really thinks Reagan isn’t conservative enough to get our party’s nomination:

Some of Reagan’s strongest opponents were, in fact, establishment Republicans — guys like Jeb Bush’s dad, who called Reagan’s fiscal policies “voodoo economics.”

If Reagan were alive today, he would probably find that some things have changed. But the party he loved and the causes he cared so deeply about are still here, still very much a part of the conservative movement.

She laid out a conservative case for Reagan. Here’s a few points:

  • “He famously campaigned against state-sponsored welfare programs…”
  •  “Reagan so despised the caprice and power of organized labor that he told an entire fleet of air-traffic controllers to get the hell back to work.”
  • “Reagan was so supportive of capital punishment he could make a Texan blush today..”

There are more examples… all of which have the same problem: these examples essentially all come from during his presidency or his campaign. But, as a hypothetical candidate in 2012 for the Republican Party nomination, we can’t look at Reagan, the two-term president, can we? It just doesn’t make sense, constitutionally or otherwise.

So, hypothetically speaking, what would have happened to Ronald Reagan in the 2012 primary, with the record of Ronald Reagan prior to January 20, 1981?

Based on what we saw in this year’s primary, with every single candidate being dubbed a RINO by supporters of opposing candidates, it’s not unreasonable to assume that Reagan being a former Democrat would have made many in the Tea Party skeptical, if not outright distrusting.

And then there’s his record as Governor of California. Though this occurred before I was born, it doesn’t take much Googling to find that there was and still is plenty of debate over just how conservative he was as governor.

But Reagan, like his Republican successors in presidential campaigns, campaigned on a conservative platform. Yes, as S.E. mentioned, today’s party did nominate McCain in 2008, and at CPAC 2008, when Mitt Romney ended his campaign paving the way for McCain to lock up the nomination, conservative activists all around me were furious. Those same activists were furious that the “conservative alternative to McCain” in 2008 would be their party’s nominee in 2012. Indeed, several of my conservative blogger/activist friends and counterparts put a lot of effort into a NotMittRomney campaign.

I’m not going to rehash the points I made the other day in Cluster’s blog post, but I am going say that it’s not a fair attack Jeb by using Reagan’s record as president. And yes, I am sure there are plenty of conservative cases for Reagan’s gubernatorial record, but there are also conservative cases against it, which most certainly would have been made… and in the internet age, Reagan’s path to the Republican nomination would have looked very different. There is no reason to believe that the Tea Party, or one of its many subgroups, wouldn’t have rallied against him for one reason or another, regardless of the conservative values and positions he ran on in 1980.

It’s not the party that’s the problem though, it’s the base… the voters who vote in primaries… we’ve grown less will to accept compromise. I’m not saying we trade in conservative values to achieve electoral victories, but we should be willing to take smaller steps in the right direction when bigger steps are less likely to be achieved.

For example: Senator Scott Brown’s 2010 special election victory came in part to Tea Party support from around the country. This year, as he tries for a full term, many of those supporters have turned away, because Brown has not been conservative enough. Apparently, to some conservative activists, a small step to the right is no longer worth investing in, even if it means a large step to the left is the alternative.

Activists on both sides of the aisle are becoming less tolerant of moderates in their party. There’s no use in denying it. When allegiances are made in primary it’s easier to brand the candidate you don’t support as RINO, than give them credit for a compromise that overal achieved a conservative end.

And Ronald Reagan would not have been immune to it.

Obama Adds His Name Into Official White House Biographies of Past Presidents

Have you heard this one yet?

Many of President Obama’s fervent devotees are young enough not to have much memory of the political world before the arrival of The One. Coincidentally, Obama himself feels the same way—and the White House’s official website reflects that.

The Heritage Foundation’s Rory Cooper tweeted that Obama had casually dropped his own name into Ronald Reagan’s official biography on http://www.whitehouse.gov, claiming credit for taking up the mantle of Reagan’s tax reform advocacy with his “Buffett Rule” gimmick. My first thought was, he must be joking. But he wasn’t—it turns out Obama has added bullet points bragging about his own accomplishments to the biographical sketches of every single U.S. president since Calvin Coolidge (except, for some reason, Gerald Ford). Here are a few examples:

Many call it creep, narcissistic, etc. etc… Sure, it’s all that. But I think there’s more to it, than Obama’s ego.

If you Google any president in history, their White House biograpy is one of the top five results. Could it be that this is merely a clever Google-bomb strategy?

Unless, of course, you think Obama is above turning the taxpayer-funded White House website into a campaign device.

Obama Takes Dick Cheney’s Position on Gay Marriage

So, Obama announces that he’s for gay marriage (did anyone really believe otherwise) with the caveat that states on to decide on the issue. Okay. Hardly a gutsy move, especially when you consider the fact that the the position he’s taking on gay marriage is basically the same that former Vice-President Dick Cheney took… three years ago.

(June 1, 2009) Former vice president Richard Cheney waded into another simmering public debate today, suggesting he supports legalizing gay marriage as long as the issue is decided by the states rather than the federal government.

Cheney, whose youngest daughter is a lesbian with a longtime partner, said during an appearance at the National Press Club that “people ought to be free to enter into any kind of union they wish, any kind of arrangement they wish.”

He said he does not support federal action allowing gay marriages, however. “Historically the way marriage has been regulated is at the state level,” Cheney said. “It has always been a state issue and I think that is the way it ought to be handled, on a state-by-state basis.”

Cheney has long departed from conservative orthodoxy on the issue of gay marriage, saying during the 2000 presidential campaign that the matter should be left to the states. He also prompted an uproar during the 2004 race when he appeared to distance himself from a proposed constitutional amendment to ban gay marriage, which was strongly supported by his boss, George W. Bush.

I don’t recall Cheney getting any praise from those pretending that Obama’s position is so groundbreaking.

Did Obama Wait Nearly A Year To Take Out Bin Laden for Political Reasons?

Talk about karma… Obama isn’t just experience backlash for politicizing the death of Osama bin Laden, but new details are emerging that contradict the White House version of the story. This week we learned of a memo indicating Obama has preemptively assigned blame to the military had the raid gone bad, and other details about how Leon Panetta had actually issued the order the take out bin Laden, and that Obama was essentially “overruled” in taking action.

Now retired Top General Jack Keane reveals that Obama knew of Osama bin Laden’s location for nearly a year before he was taken out.

One has to ask why would Obama hesitate to act for nearly a year? Was it really about confirmation of the target? Doubtful. I think the answer is obvious, based on Obama’s current reelection strategy to take credit for the raid. Obama wanted to hold off as long as possible in order to gain the most political advantage from bin Laden’s death. He did get a measurable, but short-lived bump in the polls, but Obama is now trying desperately to keep the event in the voters’ minds, which is a hard task when they are preoccupied with losing their jobs or trying hard to afford to fill up their gas tanks.

Obama is lucky that his hesitation didn’t result in bin Laden’s whereabouts being lost again.

UPDATE, by Mark NoonanLooks like Obama blew the cover of a Brit intelligence asset in order to score a political point.  Liberals, of course, were outraged when the non-covert Plame was “exposed”…bet we won’t hear a peep from them about this.

The Survey Says: GOP Voters Are Better Informed, More Open Minded

File this under: Duhhh!

Yet another new survey shows that Republican supporters know more about politics and political history than Democrats.

On eight of 13 questions about politics, Republicans outscored Democrats by an average of 18 percentage points, according to a new Pew survey titled “Partisan Differences in Knowledge.”

The Pew survey adds to a wave of surveys and studies showing that GOP-sympathizers are better informed, more intellectually consistent, more open-minded, more empathetic and more receptive to criticism than their fellow Americans who support the Democratic Party.

“Republicans fare substantially better than Democrats on several questions in the survey, as is typically the case in surveys about political knowledge,” said the study, which noted that Democrats outscored Republicans on five questions by an average of 4.6 percent.

This latest survey from Pew gives even more credence to an earlier survey showing liberals being much more close-minded.

A March 12 Pew study showed that Democrats are far more likely that conservatives to disconnect from people who disagree with them.

“In all, 28% of liberals have blocked, unfriended, or hidden someone on SNS [social networking sites] because of one of these reasons, compared with 16% of conservatives and 14% of moderates,” said the report, tiled “Social networking sites and politics.”

The report also noted that 11 percent of liberals, but only 4 percent of conservatives, deleted friends from their social networks after disagreeing with their politics.

A March Washington Post poll showed that Democrats were more willing to change their views about a subject to make their team look good. For example, in 2006, 73 percent of Democrats said the GOP-controlled White House could lower gas prices, but that number fell by more than half to 33 percent in 2012 once a Democrat was in the White House.

Anecdotally, I have to say I see proof of this plenty. In my life I’ve lost friendships with people who couldn’t tolerate my political views. And I’ve known plenty of liberals whose views of conservatives could only be described as bigoted. I’m not saying it doesn’t go both ways at times, but it seems to me, as these surveys support, liberals are far more guilty of it.

Democrats Actually Believe Americans Like Obamacare

Direct from their Flat Earth Society meeting, congressional Democrats are claiming that the more Americans learn about Obamacare, the more they like it.

Of course, that completely contradicts virtually all polling on the matter, but since when has reality mattered much to the Democrats?

But, hey, let them believe what they want. If they want to go down with the ship, I won’t stop them.