"'We tried to get him around to a lot of those kinds of things,' said McCain campaign manager Rick Davis. 'We were very much in the friend-making business.'" (Jeffrey H. Birnbaum and John Solomon, "McCain's Unlikely Ties to K Street," The Washington Post, 12/31/07)
The Washington Post"McCain's Unlikely Ties To K Street"By Jeffrey H. Birnbaum and John SolomonDecember 31, 2007
Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) took a break from the presidential campaign trail in March to fly to a posh Utah ski resort, where he mingled with hundreds of top corporate executives assembled by J.P. Morgan Chase for its annual leadership conference.
McCain's appearance at the Deer Valley event, arranged by J.P. Morgan Vice Chairman James B. Lee Jr., a top McCain fundraiser, put him in a room with the chief executives of companies such as General Electric, Xerox and Sony. It was, Lee said, "a chance for him to let them see him for who he is and possibly decide to support him." The effort paid off: J.P. Morgan executives have donated $56,250 to McCain's campaign, two-thirds of which came after his Utah appearance. And his visit there was quickly followed up by dozens of smaller private meetings with corporate executives in New York City arranged by leading Wall Street figures.
"We tried to get him around to a lot of those kinds of things," said McCain campaign manager Rick Davis. "We were very much in the friend-making business."
It is common for politicians to court big money during a campaign. But private schmooze sessions such as the gathering in Utah pose a particular dilemma for McCain, who has spent a long career decrying "special interests" and politicians who offer special access to them in order to raise money. As a presidential candidate this year, McCain has found himself assiduously courting both lobbyists and their wealthy clients, offering them private audiences as part of his fundraising. He also counts more than 30 lobbyists among his chief fundraisers, more than any other presidential contender.
[A] recent study by the nonpartisan Campaign Finance Institute and the liberal advocacy group Public Citizen found that McCain has more lobbyists raising funds for his presidential bid than do any of his rivals. He has 32 "bundlers" of donations who are lobbyists. Former New York mayor Rudolph W. Giuliani (R) is the closest to him with 29 lobbyist bundlers, followed by Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.) with 18.
McCain's campaign has also been guided by lobbyists. Davis, the campaign manager, is a former lobbyist who represented major telecommunications companies. The campaign's senior adviser is Charles R. Black Jr., chairman of BKSH & Associates, which represents drug companies, an oil company, an automaker, a telecommunications company, defense contractors and the steel industry, among others.
Former congressman Tom Loeffler (R-Tex.) was brought in to shore up the campaign's finances and operations. Yet he maintains his day job as chairman of the Loeffler Group, whose clients include oil, auto and telecommunications companies, as well as a tobacco firm and an airline.
Other occasional McCain advisers include lobbyists Timothy P. McKone of AT&T, Robert S. Aiken of Phoenix-based Pinnacle West Capital, John W. Timmons of the Cormac Group and John Green of Ogilvy Government Relations. Also at Ogilvy is a major McCain fundraiser, Wayne L. Berman.
Their firms' clients have been a significant source of contributions to McCain's campaign. Executives for the clients of Ogilvy Government Relations gave at least $271,000 for McCain's presidential bid. Loeffler Group client employees donated $118,500, according to a Washington Post analysis. BKSH clients' executives gave $24,000.
Beyond his fundraising, McCain's conduct as chairman of the powerful Senate Commerce Committee between 1997 and 2004 has occasionally raised questions about whether he took actions to benefit major contributors to his political network, which included his Senate and presidential campaign committees, his Straight Talk political action committee and a foundation that he helped start called the Reform Institute.
In 2003 and 2004, for example, McCain took two actions favorable to Cablevision, the cable TV company, while Davis, his chief political strategist at the time, solicited the company for a total of $200,000 for the Reform Institute, a tax-exempt group that advocated an end to outsize political donations.
Davis solicited an initial donation from Cablevision chief Charles Dolan a week after Dolan testified before the Senate Commerce Committee in favor of a position backed by McCain. Davis said there was no connection between the testimony and the solicitation.
Less than a year later, McCain wrote to the Federal Communications Commission recommending Cablevision's position on cable pricing, citing Dolan by name. Cablevision followed soon thereafter with a second $100,000 donation, the Associated Press reported. …
To read the full article, please click here: www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/12/30/AR2007123002848_pf.html
Monday, December 31, 2007
"'We tried to get him around to a lot of those kinds of things,' said McCain campaign manager Rick Davis. 'We were very much in the friend-making business.'" (Jeffrey H. Birnbaum and John Solomon, "McCain's Unlikely Ties to K Street," The Washington Post, 12/31/07)
Mo-Joe ’08 Sweeps Across Iowa, Continues West Through The Silver State
Las Vegas, NV (December 31, 2007): Iowa is not the only early state seeing a surge in momentum for Joe Biden in the final weeks of primary season. Over the last two weeks, Mo-Joe ’08 has spread through Nevada as well, sparking buzz that Sen. Biden’s strong grassroots support in the early states could ultimately catapult him to the nomination. In both states, Sen. Biden has been gaining ground rapidly, picking up endorsements from a number of prominent state leaders, legislators and unions while continuing to advance in the polls.
In Iowa, Sen. Biden increasingly appears to be the dark horse poised to break through in the first in the nation caucuses on January 3rd.
Last week, Sen. Biden garnered two more legislative endorsements in Iowa, Rep. Eric Palmer of Oskaloosa and Rep. Dennis Cohoon of Burlington, bringing his tally of state legislative endorsements to 16 and ranking him third in state legislative support behind Sens. Clinton and Obama. Sen. Biden’s campaign in Iowa has been further bolstered by an impressive array of local elected officials who have pledged to organize his support on caucus night. In fact, Sen. Biden’s organized support statewide has led his rivals to privately acknowledge “substantial pockets of support for Biden.” [AP, 12/21/07]
Sen. Biden also earned endorsements from two Iowa newspapers last week, the Sheldon Northwestern Iowa Review and the Jefferson Herald. The Jefferson Herald Editorial Board wrote, “We’re frankly more comfortable with Senator Biden’s readiness to lead than with any other candidate for President in either party.” The Sheldon Northwestern Iowa Review underscored Sen. Biden’s “comfortable, distinguished understanding of foreign policy,” and “ability to work in a bipartisan spirit,” also calling him “honest, hardworking and committed to the country.” [Jefferson Herald, 12/20/07], [Northwest Iowa Review, 12/22/07]
And in Nevada, the Biden for President Campaign recently announced the endorsement of the Nevada Plumbers and Pipefitters. “Joe Biden has always been there for organized labor and that record is important to us,” said UA Local 525 Business Manager Brett McCoy. "He’s also the only candidate who has a plan to get us out of the war and who is aware of the domestic problems we face, like the economy, and knows how to fix them.”
Last week, the Biden for President Campaign announced its Nevada Women for Biden Outreach Committee and today announced two new additions to the committee: Former Nevada Democratic Party Chair Jan Jenkins as well as Douglas County Democratic Caucus Committee Chair, Jo Ann Orange. Members of the committee, who include Democratic Party activists and community leaders from across Nevada, will help the campaign organize throughout the state leading up to the Nevada caucuses on January 19th.
Catherine Jackson, a member of the committee, asked about how the candidates would get troops out of Iraq as she stood next to her son, an Iraq veteran, at the CNN Las Vegas Debate. Afterwards, she decided to publicly support Sen. Biden, saying, “Joe Biden stands for integrity. When he shook my hand at the Las Vegas debate and told me his son was on notice to be deployed to Iraq, I was impressed that he cared and knew how I felt. I am supporting Joe Biden because I know he won’t settle for anything less than our troops deserve, and will get them out of Iraq as soon as possible.”
In anticipation of surging into the top tier in the Iowa caucuses this week, Biden for President Nevada State Director Ronni Council and Deputy State Director Omar Khan have traveled to the Hawkeye State for the final campaign push. They also launched a blog, “Vegas Bets on Iowa,” to chronicle their trip and the growing momentum behind Sen. Biden in Iowa for supporters back in Nevada.
“Having moved into fourth place in Iowa in recent polls, it’s clear that caucus-goers are increasingly choosing Joe Biden as the best candidate for the job,” said Biden for President Nevada State Director Ronni Council. “And as our campaign continues to pick up steam in Nevada, we are confident as ever that by beating expectations on January 3rd and January 19th we can build the support we need to win the Democratic nomination.”
Despite His Claims, Arkansans Did Not Vote Themselves A Tax Hike
"Huckabee claimed a gasoline tax was only passed after 80 percent of voters approved it. Not true. The tax was enacted before a referendum vote on highway repairs." – Factcheck.org ("Huckabee's Fiscal Record," Factcheck.org, 11/21/07)
Gov. Huckabee Has Repeatedly Claimed That 80% Of Arkansas Voters Approved A Gas Tax:
On NBC's Meet The Press Yesterday, Gov. Huckabee Claimed That Arkansas Voters Supported A Tax For Highway Improvement. GOV. HUCKABEE: "He made claims about things like tax increases, but he failed to mention that some of those were either court-ordered or they were voted on by the people and approved by the people for things as roads." (NBC's "Meet The Press," 12/30/07)
On Fox News' Hannity & Colmes, Gov. Huckabee Said That 80% Of Arkansas Taxpayers Voted For A Gas Tax Hike. FOX NEWS' SEAN HANNITY: "You did support some tax increases, but some tax cuts. Can you explain that?" HUCKABEE: "Yes, I did. Certainly, there was an issue that involved road building and infrastructure on roads and bridges, and I did support that. … When we put that out there for the people to decide whether they wanted to affirm it, they did by an 80 percent vote, I would call that leadership." (Fox News' "Hannity & Colmes," 11/15/07)
On ABC's This Week, Gov. Huckabee Also Claimed That Voters Approved The Gas Tax Hike. ABC'S GEORGE STEPHANOPOULOS: "But you did raise those other taxes." HUCKABEE: "Well, here's what we did. On the gas tax, yeah, you know what we did? We put it on the ballot and 80 percent of the people of Arkansas voted for those fuel taxes because they wanted better roads." (ABC's "This Week," 2/11/07)
Gov. Huckabee's Campaign Chair Repeated The Claim This Morning On C-SPAN. ED ROLLINS: "And he – now he's being attacked for things like fixing the roads. The voters of Arkansas had the worst roads in the country according to 'Trucking' magazine. Truckers didn't want to go into the state. He went to the voters and he said, we have got these terrible roads. I'm going to give you an opportunity to vote a three-cent-a-gallon tax to fix the roads…" (C-SPAN's "Washington Journal," 12/31/07)
In Fact, Gov. Huckabee's Own Gubernatorial Website Contradicts The Story He's Telling Now:
In 2005, Gov. Huckabee's Website Said That The People Did Not Vote For The 1999 Fuel Tax. "The people did not vote on any of the taxes dedicated to repay these bonds. Federal gas and diesel taxes are passed and implemented by Congress, and the state funds to repay these bonds are coming from the diesel tax increase passed and implemented by the state legislature in 1999." (Gov. Mike Huckabee, "Setting The Record Straight," Press Release, 11/30/05, http://web.archive.org/web/20060926201257/www.arkansas.gov/governor/media/gems/11302005-1.html, Accessed 11/13/07)
Gov. Huckabee Has Been Misleading On The Issue:
Factcheck.org: "Not True." "Huckabee claimed a gasoline tax was only passed after 80 percent of voters approved it. Not true. The tax was enacted before a referendum vote on highway repairs." ("Huckabee's Fiscal Record," Factcheck.org, 11/21/07)
The Club For Growth Called Out Gov. Huckabee For His Misleading Statements On The Gas Tax. "While Huckabee repeatedly claims that 80% of Arkansas voters approved the gas and diesel fuel tax increases that he backed, the frequency of his repetition of this claim does not make it true. In fact, the claim is false. The Arkansas Legislature passed two bills in March of 1999 to pay for transportation projects, a gas and fuel tax hike, not subject to voter approval, and a bond issue that was contingent on voter approval. Huckabee signed the gas and diesel fuel tax increases into law on April 1, 1999; the tax hikes began taking effect that day." (Club For Growth, "Updated Huckabee White Paper," 11/13/07)
Gov. Huckabee Compromised With Democrats And De-Linked The Gas Tax From A Bond Issue:
Gov. Huckabee Agreed To A Diesel And Gasoline Tax Increase Even If His Bond Proposal Was Voted Down By The People. "But Huckabee on Thursday endorsed legislation that would impose a 3-cent tax increase on both diesel and gasoline - regardless of how the Governor's bond program fares." (David A. Lieb, "Dozen Republicans Split From Huckabee, Propose Alternative Highway Plan," The Associated Press, 2/26/99)
Gov. Huckabee's Compromise Plan Included "A Gasoline Tax Increase That Would Not Be Referred To Voters." "Gov. Mike Huckabee gave his blessing Thursday to an overhaul of his proposals for interstate repairs by including a gasoline tax increase that would not be referred to voters." (Noel E. Oman, "Huckabee Fits," Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, 2/26/99)
In April 1999, Gov. Huckabee Signed Legislation Increasing Gas Taxes WITHOUT VOTER APPROVAL:
"The Fuel Taxes Were Signed Into Law By Huckabee And Do Not Have To Go A Statewide Vote." "The bond issue is part of a highway package backed by Gov. Mike Huckabee that also includes a 4-cent diesel tax, to be phased in over two years, tax and 3-cent gas tax, to be phased in over three years. The fuel taxes were signed into law by Huckabee and do not have to go a statewide vote." ("Capitol Briefs," The Associated Press, 4/6/99)
The Vote On The Bond Proposal Was Not Tied To The Diesel And Fuel Taxes. "Although a tax increase is in the bond plan, voter approval of the bonds did not raise or lower any tax. Huckabee and the Legislature had already done that during the 1999 legislative session. They raised the diesel fuel tax 4 cents per gallon, earmarking part of that revenue to finance the bonds." (Ray Pierce And Elizabeth Caldwell, "Road Bond Issue Scores Big Win With Arkansans," Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, 6/16/99)
Gov. Huckabee Signed Legislation Increasing Diesel And Fuel Taxes, While Separately Issuing $575 Million Worth Of Bonds Depending Upon Voters Approval. "Gov. Mike Huckabee signed into law Thursday legislation to raise fuel taxes by $60 million a year and issue bonds worth $575 million to pay for Arkansas' first major road program since 1991. Diesel taxes go up immediately and the gasoline tax increase takes effect July 1, two weeks after voters decide whether to approve the bond issue intended to speed up repairs on the poorest stretches of interstates across the state." (James Jefferson, "Governor Signs Bills Raising Taxes, Bonds For Highway Program," The Associated Press, 4/1/99)
The People Would Have The Chance To Vote On JUST The Bond Proposal In June Of 1999. "Huckabee also set a June 15 special election for voters to decide whether to approve the bond issue, which is intended to speed up repairs on the poorest stretches of interstates across the state." (James Jefferson, "Governor Signs Bills Raising Taxes, Bonds For Highway Program," The Associated Press, 4/2/99)
In June 1999, Arkansans Voted 80% For The Highway Bond Proposal, NOT A Gas Tax:
The Vote On The Bond Proposal Would Not Impact The Tax Increases. "Voting on the bond issue would not change state tax rates. The legislature raised fuel taxes this year - 4 cents a gallon on diesel over two years, 3 cents a gallon on gasoline over three years - to hasten repairs on secondary highways and local roads." (James Jefferson, "Voters Back Huckabee's Road Plan," The Commercial Appeal, 6/16/99)
The Bond Proposal (WITH NO GAS TAX) Was Passed 80% To 20%.
"Gov. Mike Huckabee's $575 million bond program to reconstruct the worst stretches of Arkansas interstates over a five-year period appeared headed for an easy victory, 80 percent to 20 percent, becoming the first road bond issue approved since 1949." (James Jefferson, "Voters Back Huckabee's Road Plan," The Commercial Appeal, 6/16/99)
Osama Bin Laden sent a new message to his followers over the weekend. In it, he tried to rally support by claiming that the United States wants to control Iraq’s oil and to build permanent military bases in Iraq to dominate the region. Bin Laden claimed, “America seeks, alongside its agents in the region, to create an allied government ... that would accept in advance the presence of major U.S. bases in Iraq and give the Americans all they wish of Iraq's oil.” [Washington Post, 12/29/07]
For two years, Sen. Joe Biden has led the effort to put Congress on record that the United States will not build permanent military bases in Iraq and does not seek to control its oil. As a result, none of the funding that Congress gave to the President for Iraq last year could be used for those purposes.Sen. Biden has repeatedly pressed President Bush to clearly state U.S. policy in order to dispel the widespread belief in Iraq and across the Middle East that the United States intends to build permanent bases and to control Iraq’s energy resources. The President has refused to make a clear statement of U.S. policy. For example, the Defense Authorization bill he vetoed this week included a provision barring the construction of permanent U.S. bases that Senator Biden originated.
Sen. Biden issued the following statement:“The President’s failure to make it clear that we will not build permanent military bases in Iraq and do not seek to control its oil, has handed Bin Laden a huge propaganda tool that allows him to enlist new recruits and makes the world more dangerous. President Bush has steadfastly refused to heed my call on this critical issue as seen in his veto of the Defense bill that included my language that the United States will have no permanent military bases in Iraq. “I call on the President to state clearly and unequivocally, once and for all, that the United States will not build permanent military bases in Iraq and does not seek to control Iraq’s oil. With each passing day, the American people witness the negative consequences of this White House’s failed diplomacy. It is time for a change in Washington.”
Biden Sponsored Amendment to Bar Permanent Bases in Iraq. In May 2006 and again in August 2006, Senator Biden sponsored an amendment that was agreed to in the Senate by voice vote. The first provided “that no funds made available by title I of this Act may be made available to establish permanent United States military bases in Iraq or to exercise control by the United States over the oil infrastructure or oil resources of Iraq.” [S.AMDT.3855, agreed to in Senate by voice vote on 5/3/06; S.AMDT.4423, agreed to in Senate by unanimous consent on 6/22/06; S.AMDT.4851, agreed to in Senate by unanimous consent on 8/3/06]
The Washington Post reported, “The Senate also approved by voice vote an amendment by Sen. Joseph R. Biden Jr. (D-Del.) putting the chamber on record as opposing permanent U.S. military bases in Iraq and U.S. control of the country's natural resources.” [Washington Post, 5/4/06]
According to Army Times, “The Senate approved an amendment to the 2007 defense appropriations bill sponsored by Sen. Joseph Biden, D-Del., barring U.S. government funds from being used to establish any facility in Iraq for permanent stationing of U.S. armed forces or exercise U.S. control over Iraqi oil resources.” [Army Times, August 2006]
Today, Romney for President launched its newest television ad, "Everywhere." The ad features Governor Romney talking with the American people about the challenges confronting our country and the need to change Washington. With an exceptional record of turning around businesses and institutions, Governor Romney is the one candidate prepared to meet today's challenges. Together, he believes we can grow the economy, stop illegal immigration, defend life and preserve our traditional values. With his experience, vision and values, Governor Romney will make Washington work again and build a brighter future for America.
The ad will begin airing today as part of the campaign's rotation in Iowa. Script and viewing links are below.
Script For "Everywhere" (TV:30):
GOVERNOR MITT ROMNEY: "Everywhere my family and I go we hear that America's challenges are simply too big for Washington politicians.
"I've spent my life tackling big problems – helping turn around business, the Olympics, and state government.
"Together we can grow our economy, stop illegal immigration, defend life and preserve the values that make America the hope of the earth.
"It's time to turn around Washington.
"I'm Mitt Romney, and I approve this message."
To watch "Everywhere," please see: http://tv.mittromney.com/?showid=728429
AD FACTS: Script For "Everywhere" (TV:30):
GOVERNOR MITT ROMNEY: "Everywhere my family and I go we hear that America's challenges are simply too big for Washington politicians. I've spent my life tackling big problems – helping turn around business, the Olympics, and state government."
Bloomberg: "Romney's business record is unmatched by the current crop of leading candidates. At Bain & Co., a Boston management- consulting firm, he founded Bain Capital LLC in 1984, which has grown into one of the nation's five largest private-equity firms. Bain currently has $40 billion in assets under management, according to its Web site." (Heidi Pryzbyla, "Romney Finds Classmate Bush's Management Lapses Unlikely Hurdle," Bloomberg, 7/1/07)
Fortune: "He is, after all, the most serious major-party presidential candidate to come out of the business world since ... well, since his father, George Romney, onetime CEO of American Motors, who ran in 1968." (Marcia Vickers, "The Republicans' Mr. Fix-It," Fortune Magazine, 6/27/07)
The Boston Globe's Robert Gavin And Sacha Pfeiffer: "In time, Romney would lead the shaky start-up from a staff of seven people managing $37 million to 115 people managing $4 billion in assets. During Romney's 15-year tenure, Bain Capital would post an astonishing record, on average doubling its return on realized investments every year." (Robert Gavin and Sacha Pfeiffer, "Reaping Profit In Study, Sweat," The Boston Globe, 6/26/07)
The Associated Press: "Romney took over as head of Salt Lake's Olympic organizing committee in February 1999 after it was revealed Salt Lake organizers doled out more than $1 million in cash and gifts to members of the International Olympic Committee to win the 2002 bid. Under Romney's leadership, the Games were lauded as a critical success, a model of post-Sept. 11 security and turned a $100 million profit. Romney, a successful venture capitalist before the Games, wrote a book after titled 'Turnaround: Crisis, Leadership and the Olympic Games.'" (Debbie Hummel, "Utah's 'Adopted Son' Returns To State For Presidential Fundraiser," The Associated Press, 2/21/07)
Portfolio's Matthew Cooper: "When Romney took over the Salt Lake Organizing Committee in 1999, the games were a scandal-plagued fiscal wreck. He made them profitable." (Matthew Cooper, "Please, Not Another M.B.A. President," Portfolio, September 2007)
The Weekly Standard's Terry Eastland: "As governor, Romney has scored another turnaround, conservative in both ends and means. Told during the campaign that he would inherit a deficit of between $500 million and $1.5 billion, Romney discovered upon taking office a $650 million deficit in fiscal 2003 and an anticipated one of $3 billion in fiscal 2004. Romney balanced the 2003 budget, and he finished 2004 with a $700 million surplus. A reviving economy helped, but Romney didn't tax or borrow, and he reduced spending through government consolidation and reform." (Terry Eastland, "In 2008, Will It Be Mormon In America?" The Weekly Standard, 6/6/05)
In Massachusetts, Governor Romney Closed A Nearly $3 Billion Shortfall Without Raising Taxes. "When Mitt Romney became governor of Massachusetts in 2003, the state had a budget gap of almost $3 billion and was losing thousands of jobs a month. In Mr. Romney's four-year tenure, the deficit was eliminated without raising the sales tax or the income tax, and since the labor slump hit bottom in December 2003, the state has gained 81,000 jobs." (Pam Belluck, "Romney Candidacy Puts Massachusetts Economy In Spotlight," The New York Times, 3/16/07)
GOVERNOR MITT ROMNEY: "Together we can grow our economy, stop illegal immigration, defend life and preserve the values that make America the hope of the earth. It's time to turn around Washington. I'm Mitt Romney, and I approve this message."
To read Governor Romney's plan to strengthen our economy, please see: http://mittromney.com/News/Press-Releases/Romney_Agenda_10.9.07
To read Governor Romney's plan to enforce our immigration laws, please see: http://mittromney.com/News/Press-Releases/Romney_Agenda_12.14.07
To read Governor Romney's pro-family agenda, please see:
National Review: "But [Romney] would be able to offer a persuasive outsider's critique of Washington." (Editorial, "Romney For President," National Review, 12/11/07)
To watch "Everywhere," please see: http://tv.mittromney.com/?showid=728429
As Gov. Huckabee Granted More Clemencies, Applications Poured In
"Just as I did as Governor, I pledge as President to have a clear set of written, published guidelines setting out under what conditions pardons and commutations will be considered. Victims and their families will have an opportunity to be heard. Justice is not served when pardons and commutations are granted in an arbitrary or capricious manner." – Gov. Mitt Romney (Gov. Mitt Romney, Statement, 12/31/07)
The More Clemencies Gov. Huckabee Granted, The More Applications Poured In:
Gov. Huckabee "Cut Prison Sentences Or Granted Pardons For More Than 1,000 Criminals." "Nothing was more controversial about Mr. Huckabee's governorship than his use of clemency to grant pardons and commute prison sentences. … In all, Mr. Huckabee cut prison sentences or granted pardons for more than 1,000 criminals, far more than either his immediate predecessors or governors in neighboring states. This did not happen by chance." (Adam Nossiter and David Barstow, "Charming and Aloof, Huckabee Changed State," The New York Times, 12/22/07)
"Huckabee Granted Clemency An Average Of About Once Every Four Days." "Huckabee granted 1,033 pardons and commutations in his 10 1/2 years as governor of Arkansas. The acts of clemency benefited the stepson of a staff member, murderers who worked at the governor's mansion, a rock star and inmates who received good words from their pastors. … During his years as governor, Huckabee granted clemency an average of about once every four days." (Andrew DeMillo, "Huckabee Pardons Under Scrutiny," The Associated Press, 12/10/07)
Gov. Huckabee Said That His Goal Was Not To Lock Up Criminals. Gov. Mike Huckabee: "It's not our goal to just lock people up. … It is our goal to unlock their hearts, minds and souls so while they're here they can learn the skills that most of us take for granted." (Traci Shurley, "Work Starts On Site For Parole Violators," Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, 8/9/03)
"As His Reputation For Granting Clemency Spread, Applications Surged." "But in a small though significant number of cases, he commuted prison sentences for murderers and other violent criminals over the pleas of victims' families, prosecutors and judges. And as his reputation for granting clemency spread, applications surged." (Adam Nossiter and David Barstow, "Charming and Aloof, Huckabee Changed State," The New York Times, 12/22/07)
Clemencies Rose Because The Next Governor Might Not Be As Lenient As Gov. Huckabee. "'We had tons of them,' said Cory Cox, who worked for several years as Mr. Huckabee's aide in charge of clemency matters. 'People, they'd call and say, "Please, let the governor look at this. We don't know who the next governor is going to be."'" (Adam Nossiter and David Barstow, "Charming and Aloof, Huckabee Changed State," The New York Times, 12/22/07)
"The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette Found That Nearly One In 10 Who Received Clemency From Governor Huckabee Were Later Sentenced To Prison." (Adam Nossiter and David Barstow, "Charming and Aloof, Huckabee Changed State," The New York Times, 12/22/07)
Gov. Huckabee Would Not Give Reasons Why He Granted Clemency:
Gov. Huckabee Would Not Detail Why He Granted A Clemency. "As for Mr. Huckabee's refusal to detail his reasons for granting clemency, Mr. Cox said that was intended to prevent other petitioners from mimicking successful arguments." (Adam Nossiter and David Barstow, "Charming and Aloof, Huckabee Changed State," The New York Times, 12/22/07)
So, There Has Been Much Speculation On The Reasons For Clemencies:
"Prosecutors say Huckabee was more inclined to release or reduce the sentences of prisoners if he had direct contact with them or was lobbied by those close to him." (Andrew DeMillo, "Huckabee Pardons Under Scrutiny," The Associated Press, 12/10/07)
"'It seems to be true at least anecdotally that if a minister is involved, (Huckabee) seems likely to grant clemency,' prosecutor Robert Herzfeld said in 2004 after successfully battling the then-governor over the release of a killer." (Andrew DeMillo, "Huckabee Pardons Under Scrutiny," The Associated Press, 12/10/07)
"Questions are being raised about then-Gov. Huckabee's 2004 decision to grant clemency to a repeat Driving While Intoxicated offender in Arkansas named Eugene Fields, despite the objections of a law enforcement official at the time. Documents obtained by NBC News reveal Fields' case was handled differently from any other DWI clemency or pardon granted by Huckabee, and some Republicans are now suggesting significant political contributions may have influenced the governor's decision." (Amna Nawaz, " DWI Clemency/Donations Spur Questions," NBC News' First Read, http://firstread.msnbc.msn.com, Posted 12/15/07)
Elaine Colclasure, co-leader of the Central Arkansas chapter of Parents of Murdered Children, a victims' advocacy group: "He doesn't want anyone questioning anything he does. And when you do, he bristles. His compassion is for the murderer and any criminal who says he has found Jesus." (Adam Nossiter and David Barstow, "Charming and Aloof, Huckabee Changed State," The New York Times, 12/22/07)
Gov. Romney Issued Detailed Clemency Guidelines, Declaring It Should Be Exercised Only Rarely:
Gov. Romney Declared That Clemency Should Only Be Granted "Under The Most Rare And Extraordinary Circumstances." "The Governor views the granting of executive clemency as an act of grace and not merely a remedy, which should be only awarded under the most rare and extraordinary circumstances. Because a grant of executive clemency has the effect of eradicating a lawfully obtained Massachusetts conviction or reducing a properly imposed sentence, the granting of executive clemency should not be viewed as a routine post-conviction remedy." (Office Of Governor Mitt Romney, "Executive Clemency Guidelines," 4/22/03)
"In Granting Executive Clemency, The Governor Neither Questions The Propriety Of A Court Proceeding Or Disposition, Nor Does He Substitute His Judgment For That Of The Courts." (Office Of Governor Mitt Romney, "Executive Clemency Guidelines," 4/22/03)
In His Four Years As Governor, Romney Denied All Requests For Pardon And Commutation. "During the four years Romney was in office, 100 requests for commutations and 172 requests for pardons were filed in the state. All were denied. 'Governor Romney's view is that it would take a compelling set of circumstances to set aside the punishment and guilt resulting from a criminal trial,' said Romney aide Eric Fehrnstrom… 'The power to pardon should only be used in extraordinary circumstances.'" ("Romney Touts Record Of Never Granting Pardons," The Associated Press, 6/12/07)
As President, Gov. Romney Would Also Lay Out Clear Guidelines On Clemencies. GOV. MITT ROMNEY: "One of the awesome powers granted by the Constitution to the executive is the power to pardon. I believe the power to pardon should be used in only the most narrow of circumstances, when the facts of a particular case are so compelling that the punishment and guilt should be set aside. In the recent past, pardon power has been used much more broadly. Bill Clinton abused this power to forgive criminal offenses that in my view were not deserving of clemency. Just as I did as Governor, I pledge as President to have a clear set of written, published guidelines setting out under what conditions pardons and commutations will be considered. Victims and their families will have an opportunity to be heard. Justice is not served when pardons and commutations are granted in an arbitrary or capricious manner." (Gov. Mitt Romney, Statement, 12/31/07)
U.S. Senator John McCain's presidential campaign today announced that it has filed the entire slate of 18 At-Large Delegates with the West Virginia Republican Party in Charleston.
"Each day we're reminded that the world is a dangerous place," said state co-chair Larry Swann. "John McCain is the only candidate with the experience and judgment to lead, and take on the challenges facing our great nation from the first day he's in office. John McCain is a man of unmatched courage and character, and I am proud to support him for president."
John McCain thanked Mr. Swann and the delegates, stating, "I am grateful for Larry's support and for the continued encouragement from the volunteers who have worked tirelessly on my behalf in West Virginia."
JOHN MCCAIN 2008 WEST VIRGINIA DELEGATE SLATE
State Delegate Darryl Cowles
James "Smiley" Martin
Claims Fiscal Restraint, But Would Raise Taxes To Pay For Big Spending
"Our nation cannot afford the Democrats and a Democrat President like Hillary Clinton who will sign tax increases into law. Instead of following Democrats, we need to lower taxes, cut spending, and grow the economy." – Gov. Mitt Romney (Gov. Mitt Romney, Press Release, 10/25/07)
For Sen. Obama, Fiscal Restraint Means Higher Taxes To Pay For More Spending:
Sen. Obama Claims He Will Bring Fiscal Restraint To Washington. "Obama loves his Republicans. He makes an open pitch for GOP voters in his stump speeches, even as he calls them out in his stump speeches, saying he can beat Mitt and Rudy and Huckabee. … He went on to contrast himself with all the Republicans in the field, saying he believes in fiscal restraint 'unlike the Republican orthodoxy.'" (Aswini Anburajan, "Obama Contrasts Himself With Romney," NBC News' First Read, http://firstread.msnbc.msn.com, Posted 12/30/07)
But Sen. Obama Would Hike Taxes To Pay For His Health Care Plan. "Democratic presidential hopeful Barack Obama on Tuesday offered a plan to provide health care to millions of Americans and more affordable medical insurance, financed by tax increases on the wealthy. … The experts also said Obama could pay for his plan mostly through steps that the candidate already has said he would take -- allowing President Bush's tax cuts on dividends and capital gains and on those making more than about $250,000 a year to expire in 2010 instead of acting to make them permanent. The rest of the $65 billion funding could come by raising taxes on inheritances worth more than $7 million." (Mike Glover, "Taxes On Wealthy Would Rise Under Obama Health Care Plan," The Associated Press, 5/29/07)
THE ROMNEY VISION: "THE RIGHT ANSWER IS ALWAYS TO KEEP TAXES DOWN"
Gov. Romney Rejects The Democrats' Attempts To Raise Taxes On American Families:
Gov. Romney Believes That America "Can't Afford" The Democrats' Plans To Increase Taxes. GOV. ROMNEY: "Charlie Rangel just came out this week saying he wants to put a surcharge on taxes, largest increase in the history of America. Look, more taxes are what the Democrats have in mind to fund many of Hillary Clinton's million good ideas. We can't afford that. It would slow down the economy. It would kill job creation in this country." (CNBC's "Mad Money," 10/28/07)
Gov. Romney: "The Right Answer Is Always To Keep Taxes Down." GOV. ROMNEY: "The right answer is always to keep taxes down. Don't add new taxes, but instead allow the American people and the entrepreneurial spirit to grow our economy. That's the best way to get revenues for government and the best ways to get good jobs for our people." (CNBC's "Mad Money," 10/28/07)
Gov. Romney Opposes The Democrats' Plans To Roll Back The Bush Tax Cuts. GOV. ROMNEY: "Let me tell you what I'd do, as opposed to what Hillary Clinton would do with regard to our tax and spending policies. First of all, I would make the Bush tax cuts permanent immediately – all of them, not some of them, but all of them." (Gov. Mitt Romney, Remarks To The Club For Growth, 10/17/07)
SEN. OBAMA: A TAX HIKE "RESTORES SOME FAIRNESS"
The Democrats Support Raising Taxes On American Families:
Sen. Barack Obama (D-IL) Said That Rolling Back The Bush Tax Cuts "Simply Restores Some Fairness." OBAMA: "Those kinds of progressive tax steps, while closing loopholes and rolling back the Bush tax cuts to the top 1 percent, simply restores some fairness and a sense that we're all in this together as opposed to each of us being in it on our own." (NBC's Democratic Presidential Candidate Debate At Drexel University, Philadelphia, PA, 10/30/07)
Sen. Obama Would Raise The Cap On Social Security Payroll Taxes. OBAMA: "I think the best way to approach this is to adjust the cap on the payroll tax so that people like myself are paying a little bit more and people who are in need are protected. That is the option that I will be pushing forward." (NBC's "Meet The Press," 11/11/07)
Sen. Obama Even Supports A Tax Increase On Himself. NBC's TIM RUSSERT: "A tax increase for some?" OBAMA: "Tax increase for people like myself probably." (NBC's "Meet The Press," 11/11/07
Sen. Obama Wants Americans To Pay "A Little Bit More," Even "Middle Class Folks." OBAMA: "So what I've said -- and I know some others on this stage have said -- is that among the options that are available, the best one is to lift the cap on the payroll tax, potentially exempting folks in the middle -- middle-class folks -- but making sure that the wealthy are paying more of their fair share, a little bit more." (NBC's Democratic Presidential Candidate Debate At Drexel University, Philadelphia, PA, 10/30/07)
U.S. Senator John McCain's presidential campaign today announced that Michigan State Senator Mark Jansen has endorsed John McCain for president and will serve as Co-Chair of the McCain campaign in West Michigan.
"John McCain understands the challenges facing communities in Michigan and has a plan to cut taxes and restore trust in our government. His lifetime of service and experience makes him the most prepared to lead from day one and that was made very clear by the recent tragedy in Pakistan," said Senator Mark Jansen. "He is the only candidate prepared to lead our country in the battle against radical extremism and I am proud to support his candidacy."
John McCain added, "I am grateful that Mark is joining our team and will help lead our efforts in West Michigan. I look forward to working with him as we gear-up for Michigan's January 15th Primary and to visiting our friends in West Michigan again soon."
Senator Jansen was recently named the most conservative member of the Michigan Senate by MichiganVotes.org. He will serve as Chair of the West Michigan town hall with John McCain on January 9th -- the day after the New Hampshire Primary.
Senator Jansen was elected to the Michigan State Senate in 2006. He was first elected to the Michigan House of Representatives in November 1996 and was re-elected twice, serving through 2002. During his first term, he was elected by his peers to be an assistant minority whip and was a member of the House Bipartisan Urban Caucus. During his second term, the Speaker appointed Jansen to lead the House Republican Policy Committee and to serve on the House Republican Campaign Committee. Before his tenure in the Michigan House, Jansen was elected as the Gaines Township Clerk from 1992-1996.
In 2007, Senator Jansen was awarded Michigan's Children Legislative Hero Award, Michigan Soft Drink Association's Legislative Leadership Award, Michigan Non-Profit Association National Service Champion Award and the Michigan Municipal League Legislator Salute.
"Why Romney Is Right For Iowa, America"Townhall By Doug Wilson
December 31, 2007
"About this time last year I carefully evaluated the candidates for the GOP nomination. It was a nerve-rattling experience, particularly in the still-fresh wake of the 2006 elections that swept Democrats to power. I considered many factors in selecting a candidate, but two in particular stand out a year later. First, I wanted to support a candidate who would unify the Republican coalition. Second, I wanted to support a candidate with a track record of extraordinary leadership.
"I found such a candidate in Mitt Romney."
"In evaluating the candidates, I determined that Governor Romney is the best candidate to unify the Republican coalition – and therefore the most likely to defeat Clinton or Obama in November. He is a strong military conservative who has spoken eloquently and forcefully about the threat of radical Islam; he is a dependable economic conservative who wants to extend the Bush tax cuts and believes in the power of free markets and free trade; finally, he is a social conservative who understands the importance of family values and a culture of life. In short, he is a friend to – and a unifier of – all three parts of the Republican coalition."
" But only one candidate, Governor Romney, has the breadth of leadership experience that I believe our next president needs.
"Governor Romney not only has government leadership experience as Massachusetts’ former chief executive, but he also has private sector leadership experience. Governor Romney spent the majority of his career at Bain Capital, building a world-renowned private investment firm that helped birth companies such as Staples and Domino’s Pizza. He also rescued the Salt Lake City Olympics from an ethics scandal, thereby bringing honor to our country with one of the finest Games in recent memory.
"It is Governor Romney’s experience at Bain and the Olympics that truly sets him apart from his competitors. He has seen, firsthand, the ups and downs of the business world. He understands the symbiotic relationship between competition and efficiency, and grasps the detrimental impact that high taxes and government regulation have on businesses. Most importantly, he has made a career, both in the private and public sector, of making the touch decisions, of being the person with whom the buck stops."
"Governor Romney’s ability to unify the Republican coalition and to provide effective leadership on his first day in the White House differentiate him from his GOP competitors, and position him to beat the Democratic nominee in November. I urge my fellow Republicans in Iowa and elsewhere to support the right man at the right time for our country: Governor Mitt Romney."
Doug Wilson is chairman of Townhall.com, a California co-chair of Mitt Romney's presidential campaign, an advisor to the Heritage Foundation, and co-author of Getting America Right: The True Conservative Values Our Nation Needs Today.
To read the full endorsement, please see: www.townhall.com
Response to Misleading Club For Growth Attack Ad
Governor Huckabee's record on taxes as a steward of the public's money has been CLEAR and consistent as a conservative with strong pro-growth.policies. The Club for Growth misrepresents this record. [read more]
Response To Ann Coulter
Ann Coulter's comments are based on a response I made during a radio call-in show in which a caller asked what I thought about the Supreme Court ruling on Lawrence v. Texas. At the time I had not read the ruling and was basing my opinion on the summary by the caller. After reading the decision I believe it is obvious that the ruling was wrongly decided. [read more]
Response To Romney On Foreign Policy
Once again, Governor Romney has highlighted his willingness to do an “about face” on the serious issues facing the American people – especially those involving the nation’s foreign policy. [read more]
Response to Romney December 17 Attack Ad
TRUTH: Governor Huckabee was tougher on methamphetamine manufacturers than Governor Romney. In a new attack ad released today, Governor Romney attempts to contrast his position on drugs with that of Governor Huckabee. [read more]
Response To Fred Thompson Mailer
Setting the record straight on negative attacks from Senator Thompson. [read more]
Response To The Drudge Report
On December 10, the Drudge Report linked to an article in The Arkansas Leader titled, "Why parole a monster like Green." Drudge links to the article as if it were a new story rather than an editorial 2004. [read more]
Former Huckabee Aide Denounces Huffpo Distortion
A report on the left-wing blog, The Huffington Post makes allegations against Republican Presidential candidate Mike Huckabee that are inaccurate and distort the truth. [read more]
Governor Huckabee's Response to the Wayne Dumond Incident
This is the transcript from his answer at the press conference today on the Wayne Dumond Case. Governor Huckabee was asked if he had pressured the parole board to release Dumond. [read more]
Response to Ernie Dumas
His assessment would have been easier had he simply asked whether Arkansans were better off under Clinton or under Governor Huckabee.. [read more]
Driver's Licenses for Illegal Immigrants
Governor Huckabee opposes giving driver's licenses to illegals and supports legislation to prevent states from doing so. [read more]
Response to Club for Growth
Since January, the Club for Growth has attacked the Governor Huckabee's credentials as a fiscal conservative. The first salvo came with the release of their white paper, ""Is Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee a Pro-Growth, Economic Conservative?" An honest examination of Huckabee's tenure as governor would have to conclude that he is the most pro-growth, economic conservative with executive experience in the race. [read more]
Response to Fred Thompson on Abortion and the HLA
On Fox News Sunday [11/25/07], Sen. Fred Thompson claimed that Gov. Huckabee "supported the same thing that I've been saying as late as last year, leave [abortion] up to that states, essentially." This is simply not true. [read more]
Immigration Facts- The Governor opposes and will never allow amnesty. [read more]
The overwhelming majority of ethics complaints filed against Governor Huckabee in the state of Arkansas were regularly dismissed and / or proven to be frivolous. [read more]
Wayne Dumond Story
It has been reported that Governor Huckabee released, pardoned, or granted parole to convicted rapist Wayne Dumond. That is not true. [read more]
A Letter From Rick Calhoun, Former Chairman of the Arkansas Eagle Forum
Now is the time for Christian conservatives to unite behind the only candidate in the upcoming presidential contest who shares our values and vision for America. [read more]
As voting nears in the Republican nomination process, our campaign remains convinced that our strategy we have long had in place is right – bold, innovative and designed to deal with the radically different election calendar. While many of the beltway insiders seem to remain committed to the old "Carter/Clinton" approach and have questioned the adjustments we have made to our strategic thinking based on the new calendar, we clearly have a winning plan to secure the nomination in an election cycle unlike any other. History will prove us right.
As we enter the final stages of the campaign we have seen a tightening in the national polling and the emergence of a real 5-way race for the Republican nomination. Mayor Giuliani has led virtually every national major media poll conducted in 2007. We are now at a point in the campaign where we are seeing increasing polling volatility as public attention turns to the horse races in individual states.
Important to our long term strategy, Mayor Giuliani has enjoyed a commanding lead in nearly every public poll conducted in the delegate rich states of Florida, California, Illinois, New York and New Jersey.
2007 November – December Public Polling Averages Mayor Giuliani and Closest Opponent in state polling
State Mayor Giuliani Average Closest Opponent Average
Florida 30% 17%
California 29% 15%
New Jersey 38% 12%
New York 40% 12%
The Primary Calendar2008 will be unlike any recent Republican nomination process. What typically has been a primary process that stretched into March or April has been accelerated and compacted into a 33 day sprint.
Our rivals seemingly have built campaigns based on the old calendars’ strategies — a couple of very early state wins to propel them deeper in to the nomination process. To the contrary, our plan allocates time and resources to the many states which vote a bit later — on January 29 (Florida) and February 5.
For the record, only 78 delegates will be picked prior to Florida whereas 1,039 delegates will be picked on January 29 and February 5. Additionally, it is important to note that voting HAS ALREADY STARTED in Florida, Missouri, Georgia, Illinois, New Jersey and New York – tens of thousands of people will have already cast their ballot by the time you are reading this note. And more February 5th states, including California will begin early and absentee voting soon. All of this points to the folly of over-estimating the impact of the results of Iowa and New Hampshire and the wisdom of our strategy.
Putting a high priority on spending our time and money in a proportional basis in Florida and the large delegate states voting on February 5th is clearly the right thing to do.
The Early States
The pre-February 5th states are Iowa, Wyoming, New Hampshire, Michigan, Nevada, South Carolina, Florida and Maine. Delegates are at stake in just five states before February 5. Wyoming will select a portion of its delegates at their caucus in January, but will not allocate all of their delegates until later in the year. Iowa, Nevada and Maine award NO delegates at this time. Florida is the big prize on January 29, with 57 winner-take-all delegates – the only winner-take-all state before February 5th.
Pre February 5th Contests
Date State Estimated Delegates after RNC Penalty
1/3 Iowa 0*
1/5 Wyoming 12
1/8 New Hampshire 12
1/15 Michigan 30
1/19 Nevada 0*
1/19 South Carolina 24
1/29 Florida 57
2/1 Maine 0*
Because states selecting delegates before February 5th are in violation of Republican National Committee rules, those states have been penalized half of their normal delegates; Iowa, Nevada, and Maine do not select any delegates at their caucuses, but rather at state party conventions in late spring. The states before February 5th will allocate delegates to multiple candidates under varying state election laws and state party rules. Thus, it is highly unlikely that any single candidate will win all of any one state’s delegates except Florida’s, which will be winner-take-all.
Florida accounts for more than 40% of all delegates allocated before February 5th and has almost twice as many delegates as the next largest state. It is therefore easy and correct to conclude that in a multiple candidate race, whichever candidate wins Florida, with their winner-take-all delegates, will very likely have a delegate lead going into February 5th.
On February 5th, 982 delegates will be in play. Most importantly, a bloc of 201 winner-take-all delegates will be at stake in New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, and Delaware, all states in which Mayor Giuliani has double digit leads. Aside from the huge northeast delegate prize, Missouri will award 58 winner-take-all delegates, and Senator Kit Bond’s endorsement gives our organization a great statewide network there. Also on February 5th, large states such as California, Georgia and Illinois will award most of their delegates by Congressional District vote. It is for this reason that Mayor Giuliani has spent a great deal of time in each of those states and has always polled well in them.
Path to Victory
If Mayor Giuliani wins even a minority share of the 78 delegates from pre Florida states, wins Florida’s 57 delegates, wins the 201 available in New York, New Jersey, Connecticut and Delaware, and wins only a plurality of delegates from large February 5th states like California, Georgia and Illinois, he will have a commanding lead in delegates for the nomination with more than half of the delegates selected.
State Polling and Outlooks
As noted above, polling has been and will continue to be dynamic and incredibly volatile. In Iowa for instance -just in December- we have seen polls placing the Mayor’s support from as high as 3rd to as low as 6th place. Senator McCain caucus support has ranged from a high of 20% to a low of 5%. And polling over the Christmas and New Year holidays will not be any less fickle.
In Iowa, one could anticipate that Mayor Giuliani might finish outside of the top 3. Governors Huckabee and Romney are battling it out for first, Senator Thompson is spending a lot of time in the state over the closing days of the campaign and Senator McCain received a recent boost from the endorsement of the Des Moines Register. While placement in Iowa will be a focus of the media, it should be remembered that Senator McCain came in 5th place in Iowa (behind Bauer and Keyes) before winning New Hampshire.
The most covered story out of Iowa will likely be the Democratic race, but on the Republican side, the Huckabee/Romney race will be very interesting. The Romney campaign has invested millions of dollars and assembled a massive paid staff; some now question whether Mitt Romney’s Iowa investment and organization will prevail over Mike Huckabee. While Governor Huckabee was climbing rapidly in polls before Christmas, he now seems to have plateaued. Governor Romney’s strategy has long been based on winning the first few races to build momentum. Many believe the Romney organization (and a few million more dollars of get-out-the-vote money) will pull this one out for their campaign.
New Hampshire is only a few days after Iowa and voters there are notoriously late deciders on their presidential primary vote. New Hampshire will be very much in flux after Iowa. Governor Romney was governor of neighboring Massachusetts and Senator McCain won New Hampshire in 2000. In addition to Senator McCain’s base of support, he has recently put together a series of high profile endorsements in the area to further reinvigorate his campaign. The unprecedented personal spending by Governor Romney should not be underestimated. It is apparent that he has put more than $40 million of his own money into this race.
Accurate polling in New Hampshire will be nearly impossible, with the holidays complicating it logistically and the Iowa news cycle dominating press and potentially disrupting the order of the race.
Although we should expect to see more polling from South Carolina, Michigan and the other early states, one should remember that because of the furious pace of the election calendar and the never ending news cycle, polling will be very difficult to conduct, have a very short shelf life and become even more unstable and unreliable. The polling picture will be further blurred with the range of new polling methodologies that are being tested, ranging from robotic calling to internet polling.
Thus, we should all be ready for a barrage of state and national polls in January with seemingly contradictory results — some of it good news, much of it related to early January states as bad news. We should all have confidence in the strong organizations and also in the strong bases of support in Florida and other February 5th states which will endure the ups and downs of January.
Also, by the time we get to Florida, the field of candidates and the race will look remarkably different than it does right now. Florida will be the important battleground not only for our campaign but for the race itself.
Polling in Florida has been stable all year. For most of the second half of 2007, the support for Mayor Giuliani has averaged 33 or 34%. Virtually every other candidate in the race has polled in second place to us at one point or another over the year. We have remained on top in Florida. As in all races, expect to see signs of tightening in Florida as Election Day approaches, but also expect us to consolidate more support as candidates drop out of the race. We are very proud of our Florida organization, which, like all of our state organizations, is prepared for the long, hard fight to win.
One should conclude, as voting nears, that our campaign is focused on the right prize – winning enough delegates to secure the Republican nomination. Our national campaign is the right strategy for getting it done.
The Thompson campaign today released the following excerpts of Fred Thompson's 17-minute video address to the people of Iowa:
Hello, I'm Fred Thompson.
In the closing days of this historic contest here in Iowa, I wanted to take a few moments to talk quietly with you about the stakes in this election and the critical issues you will soon decide.
Because there is no frontrunner here in Iowa and because yours will be the first votes cast in this crucial election year, your decision will be one the entire country closely watches and learns from.
When you go to your local caucus on January 3rd and fill out your paper ballot - and, by the way, it's just that easy - how you vote will go a long way towards deciding who will lead us as president through dangerous years ahead.
That the years ahead will be dangerous needs no elaboration from me. Most Americans know the forces of terrorism will not rest until a mushroom cloud hangs over one of our cities. The recent tragic assassination of former Prime Minister Bhutto in Pakistan again demonstrates the terrorists' will to power and their relentless cruelty.
Along with threats to our national security, we have great domestic challenges before us - the economy, taxes, protecting our borders, and protecting the right to life.
So, I want to talk to you now about the threats and dangers that we face as a people -- but also about the hope and opportunity I see out there.
Now there are many good men running for our party's nomination. Each of them loves our country. Each of them has something interesting and useful to offer. But the fact of the matter is that the Republican Party is a conservative party. That's the philosophy that's shaped us. That's the philosophy that has won us elections. And that's the philosophy we must champion if we are to win again in 2008.
And on that score, among each of the men seeking our party's nomination, my record stands out. I entered public life as a conservative. I served in the Senate as a strong, consistent conservative with a 100% pro life voting record. And I have the same philosophy today that I had back then. What you see is what you get. I dance to no man's tune. And no one has ever accused me of changing my position on anything for the sake of political expediency. That's why when someone here in Iowa said conservatives were looking for a horse to ride in 2008, I responded, "Saddle me up." And in the battle of ideas, we can't afford a Republican leader who doesn't have a core philosophy that grounds him. I know who I am. I know what I believe. And I am ready to lead. ;
And I would ask people to think one thing before they caucus: When our worst enemy is sitting across from us at the negotiating table, and they're thinking about what they can do to harm the United States of America, and what they might could get away with, who do you want sitting on our side of the table representing you, working to keep you safe? That's probably the person you ought to elect as President.
I've been tested. And I believe our country's best days are ahead of us if we take on the responsibility of leadership. The American people are waiting for us to step up, protect our values, our principles and our country. Together we can do something great for America. I welcome that challenge.
You know, when I'm asked which of the current group of Democratic candidates I prefer to run against, I always say it really doesn't matter. Because these days all those candidates, all the Democratic leaders, are one and the same. They're all NEA, Move On.org , ACLU, Michael Moore Democrats. They've allowed these radicals to take control of their party and dictate their course.
So this election is important not just to enact our conservative principles. This election is important to salvage the once-great political party from the grip of extremism and shake it back to its senses. It's time to give not just Republicans but independents and, yes, good Democrats a chance to call a halt to the leftward lurch of the once proud party of working people.
Read entire transcript here: http://www.fred08.com/NewsRoom/Speech.aspx?ID=18aa07a9-dad3-46cd-8634-bdd950fb4c26
View 17-minute video here: http://fredfile.fred08.com/blog/2007/video-freds-message-to-iowa-voters/
McLean, VA - Today, Senator Fred Thompson released the following statement:
"I want to congratulate Senator Wicker on his appointment to the U.S. Senate. Roger is an old friend and I know he'll serve the people of Mississippi well. With Mississippi's two U.S Senators as my campaign co-chairs, I look forward to being successful in Mississippi's primary and sharing the ballot with Senator Wicker in November of 2008."
Sunday, December 30, 2007
DES MOINES, Iowa - Mike Huckabee says John McCain is a hero. McCain says Huckabee is a good man. And they both seem to agree on this: Mitt Romney is neither.
Posted by Georgia Front Page.com at 11:28 PM
GFP Note: The Georgia Front Page has a separate blog set up for Duncan Hunter. We contacted his campaign early in the cycle (along with all others) and volunteered to set up a blog on the Georgia Front Page for them. Hunter responded.
Like many, most of our staff can't understand why Hunter isn't getting more notice. Many say it is a lack of money. However, if he's not being mentioned in the media, if they don't give him time during the debates, then how is he to get on the general public's radar screen? How will he be able to collect money?
We have decided that at we will be posting links to other blogs that reference Duncan Hunter on this blog / column. If you'd like to see Hunter's press releases and campaign materials, look to the right for a link to our blog for Duncan Hunter.
Crunch Time For Duncan Hunter In IowaBy The Anon Guy Like I said, many have not decided yet and YOU can make the difference just by showing them that support for Duncan Hunter is building - and letting them know where he stands on the issues important to YOU and to them. ...Campaign Emails - http://campaignemails.blogspot.com/
Duncan Hunter By anglangdon Everything that I have read/heard about DH, gives me the impression that he is the whole package...am I missing something? Why is he not the front runner? Sean Hannity Discussion - http://forums.hannity.com
Seen Common Sense Lately? By Red S Tater (Red S Tater) So, I say to you, as a Reagan Republican, I will vote for Duncan Hunter and work to put him in the White House 2008. Please take time to give Duncan Hunter another look, as I did. There is much work to be done. Time is short. ...Red Stater - http://redstaterusa.blogspot.com/
Duncan Hunter's Statement on the Assassination of Benazir Bhutto By Carl Kilo(Carl Kilo) Hunter Condemns Bhutto Assassination Washington DC--Congressman Duncan Hunter (R-CA), ranking Republican on the House Armed Services Committee, today condemned the assassination of former Prime Minister of Pakistan . ...Spark It Up!!! - http://kilosparksitup.blogspot.com/
Republican Presidentail Candidate Duncan Hunter Condems Bhutto ...By Hunter for President 2008(Hunter for President 2008) For Immediate Release: December 27, 2007 Contact: Joe Kasper (202) 225-5672 Hunter Condemns Bhutto Assassination Washington DC--Congressman Duncan Hunter (R-CA), ranking Republican on the House Armed Services Committee, today condemned ...Duncan Hunter: The Only Choice - http://duncanhuntertheonlychoice.blogspot.com/
MOSCOW, Iowa (Reuters) - Four days before Iowa voters kick off a tight presidential race, Republican Mike Huckabee said on Sunday rival Mitt Romney could not be trusted to be president and Democrat Hillary Clinton said her husband would have no formal White House role if she wins.
Posted by Georgia Front Page.com at 8:30 PM
Today, Senator Hillary Clinton received the endorsement of the Concord Monitor in the upcoming presidential primary.
In their endorsement editorial, the Monitor wrote that Senator Clinton’s "unique combination of smarts, experience and toughness makes her the best choice to win the November election and truly get things done."
Clinton has also received the endorsements of four Cabinet Press weekly papers, the Keene Sentinel, Foster's Daily Democrat and Laconia Citizen, and 11 Salmon Press weekly newspapers.
The Concord Monitor Editorial follows:
Hillary Clinton is the Democrats' best choice
Immediately after taking office, President Hillary Clinton would begin preparations to withdraw American troops from Iraq.
She would send a message to world leaders that the United States intends to rejoin the community of nations.
She would make clear to federal employees that they must heed the Constitution.
She would reverse Bush-era policies that have harmed the environment.
She would quickly sign legislation supporting stem-cell research and expanding children's health insurance.
She would lift the gag rule prohibiting international family planning programs from counseling poor women about abortion.
Many White House administrations start off slowly, as green presidents fumble through their early months, unsure how to bend Washington to their will. Come 2009, America will be unable to afford such squandered time.
Clinton's ambitious to-do list for her first few weeks in office gives us confidence that her priorities are right and that she would act swiftly to make a positive difference. She is the Monitor's choice in the Jan. 8 Democratic primary.
New Hampshire Democrats and independents are blessed with a strong field of presidential candidates at a time when a change of course is desperately needed. We have been impressed by Joe Biden's pragmatic foreign policy and by John Edwards's insistence that we pay attention to the poorest Americans.
Barack Obama, more than most, has the power to inspire. The positive tone of his campaign is not a gimmick. He is a serious candidate with sober ideas. For reasons symbolic and substantive, he would also be a nominee Democrats could feel proud to vote for.
But Hillary Clinton's unique combination of smarts, experience and toughness makes her the best choice to win the November election and truly get things done. Before embarking on an agenda of her or his own, the next American president will be forced to undo the damage of the Bush years: ending the war in Iraq, restoring habeas corpus rights, ending the use of torture, healing New Orleans, restoring America's moral authority around the world.
A tall order - but not nearly enough. The next president must also take the lead on a serious effort to slow global warming, a rational policy on illegal immigration and a plan to provide health care to all Americans.
Clinton knows what she wants to accomplish. She knows how Washington works. She has forged alliances with unlikely political partners, and she has waged partisan fights on matters of principle. Her years as first lady and as a U.S. senator have put her at the center of key policy and political battles for a decade and a half. She is prepared for the job.
As first lady, Clinton acted as an American diplomat, meeting with foreign leaders across the globe on behalf of her husband and advocating for human rights. She was influential in shepherding the Family and Medical Leave Act into law. Her fumble on health care reform taught her much about the ways of Washington - and it is to her credit that universal health care remains her signature issue.
As a senator, Clinton has earned a reputation for pragmatic and sometimes creative hard work. She forged a bipartisan plan to expand health coverage to military veterans and their families. She helped secure critical federal assistance for Manhattan after the Sept. 11 attacks. By stalling the confirmation of President Bush's FDA appointee, she gained over-the-counter access for the morning-after pill. Her work with Senate Republicans, including the leader of the impeachment prosecution against her husband, gives us confidence that the cartoon version of Hillary Clinton - as a leading actor in an exhaustingly partisan Washington soap opera - is a 1990s anachronism.
As a veteran of her own campaigns and her husband's, and as a favorite target of Republicans, she has become a tough campaigner. Unlike John Kerry, she would not dither when the inevitable attacks came.
There are Democratic voters in New Hampshire and beyond who wish for a little more poetry from the guarded and highly disciplined Clinton. She can, after all, seem a relentless policy wonk, rather than an inspirational leader. But consider this: American men gave up their monopoly on the right to vote and hold public office in 1920. In the intervening 87 years, progress for women has been slow and uneven: A wage gap persists; reproductive freedom is constantly at risk; and in the 21 presidential contests since then, Americans have never even given serious consideration to voting for a woman.
The election of America's first female president will show more than half the population - including millions of young girls - that their futures are not limited by their gender, that America has moved a little closer to its ideals of liberty and justice for all. There is plenty of inspiration in that.
In a talented field, Hillary Clinton has the right experience, the right agenda and the know-how to lead the country back to respect on the world stage and meaningful progress on long-neglected problems.
Today, Hillary Clinton outlined her agenda to ease the burden on families that are struggling to balance caring for elderly parents, spouses and children, while meeting their job obligations. With a growing elderly population, many working parents are finding themselves in the "sandwich generation," facing big challenges to provide care not only as "working parents" but as "working children" for their own parents as well. In Iowa, over 15 percent of the population is 65 or older, and the state ranks second among the states for population above 85. Out-of-pocket costs for families with long-term caregiving responsibilities have skyrocketed to $5,531 per year - more than what most of these families spend on their own health care. Burdened with both long-term care and child care costs, many caregivers are dipping into their retirement savings or forgoing health care coverage for themselves. Hillary Clinton's comprehensive agenda to help these overburdened caregivers balance their responsibilities includes:
Improving Nursing Home Quality: Hillary has been working tirelessly to ensure that our seniors receive the quality care they deserve in nursing homes and long-term care facilities. Yesterday, she wrote Michael Leavitt, Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services, demanding an investigation into why the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) released its "special focus facility" list of 128 sub-standard nursing homes to industry lobbyists but not to the public. Hillary has also introduced legislation with her colleague Senator Tom Harkin to require CMS to publicly release this entire list. She believes that seniors and their families deserve full, accurate information on nursing home performance in order to make critical life decisions about long-term care. She will continue fighting until they have the information they need.
In addition, Hillary has proposed a comprehensive solution to the growing challenge of nursing home quality. From 2000 to 2006, we have seen a 22 percent increase in nursing homes citations for serious quality deficiencies - those that put residents in ‘immediate jeopardy.' As President, Hillary will:
Triple federal support for nursing home ombudsmen programs to $50 million, to directly improve the accountability and oversight over long-term care facilities. The increased resources will help the ombudsmen in Iowa and across the country to vigorously investigate complaints and tackle new, complex issues in the long term care industry.
Direct the Department of Justice and the Federal Trade Commission to assist state consumer advocates and prosecutors to tackle persistent abuses and new challenges in the long-term care industry.
Strengthen our nursing and direct care workforce with a national system of background checks for long-term care workers and $125 million investment in Workforce Improvement Programs
Require CMS to provide clear, comprehensive data on the Nursing Home Compare website on 1) up-to-date and accurate nursing home staffing levels; 2) the full-not just abridged-reports from inspections and complaint investigations; 3) any and all information about repeat offenses that CMS compiles; and 4) clear information about the ownership structures of long-term care facilities-so seniors can know who is in charge of the facilities they live in.
Helping Families Balance Their Responsibilities to Parents and Children
Offering A New $3,000 Caregiving Tax Credit: Hillary will offer a new $3,000 Caregiving Tax Credit to any person with substantial long-term care needs or to their caregivers. The credit will not require a complex accounting of out-of-pocket costs, but instead will be available directly to any individuals with substantial long-term care needs or their caregivers.
Hillary's new $3,000 Caregivers Tax Credit will benefit at least 50,000 Iowa seniors, people with disabilities and their families. [CRS, 2007; Census 2007]
Providing A New Long-Term Care Insurance Tax Credit: Hillary will offer a new tax credit to help those planning for their long-term care needs afford high-quality insurance policies that are right for them. This new tax credit will cover 75 percent of long-term care insurance premiums up to $1,500 per year for qualified long-term care insurance policies that meet strong new consumer protection requirements.
Hillary's new Long Term Care Insurance Tax Credit will benefit at least 125,000 Iowan seniors and near-retirees.
Increasing Support for Unpaid Family Caregivers: Hillary understands that the heroic work of caregiving can take its toll. By providing temporary relief and counseling for caregivers, we will improve the quality of life of those they care for. As President, Hillary will invest an additional $300 million per year in the Lifespan Respite Caregiver Act and the National Family Caregiver Support Program.
Ensuring Paid Family Leave by 2016: Hillary will set a bold goal of having paid leave for all American workers by 2016. First, she will expand the Family Medical Leave Act to cover employers with 25 or more workers, a change that will provide legal protection for unpaid leave to 13 million additional workers. Second, Hillary will commit $1 billion per year for a Family Leave Innovation Fund to support the establishment and expansion of state-level leave programs for new parents and those caring for their aging parents.
Hillary's Paid Leave Initiative could impact approximately 1.1 million workers in Iowa (94 percent of all private-sector workers) who do not have paid family leave. [National Partnership for Women & Families]
Guaranteeing Access to Sick Days for All Americans: Hillary is proposing to make seven sick days a year - to care for yourself, your spouse or your children - standard. When people go to work ill or worry about their sick child or parent, they make other people sick and they undermine the productivity of their workplaces.
Hillary's sick leave expansion could impact approximately 600,000 Iowa workers who currently do not have sick days. [National Partnership for Women & Families]
Stepping Up Support for Child Care: Hillary has worked to expand access and improve quality of child care in our country for decades. The Bush Administration has essentially frozen child care funding, significantly eroding the real purchasing power of child care subsidies. 150,000 have already lost child care assistance since 2000, and 300,000 children will lose child care assistance by 2010. Hillary will increase child care funding through the Child Care and Development Block Grant and return the program to it's original intent: to serve working families.
At Tonight’s Dubuque County ‘Picks a President’ Event, Buol Announces Support of Hillary
DUBUQUE, IA – Hillary Clinton demonstrated her strength in Eastern Iowa when Dubuque Mayor Roy Buol endorsed Hillary Clinton at the Dubuque County ‘Picks a President’ event. Mayor Buol’s endorsement comes five days before the January 3rd caucuses when Iowans will play an important role in selecting the next President of the United States.
“My wife and I believe Hillary has the intelligence, experience, and strength of character to forge a new beginning and the ability to win in November 2008. We support Senator Clinton as the next president and will be caucusing on her behalf,” Mayor Buol said. “Iowans have the responsibility to pick the next President of the United States. I took a good look at all of the candidates and Hillary Clinton is the only one with real solutions to help move our country forward.”.
Mayor Buol, a native of Dubuque, was elected in 2006 after serving on the Dubuque City Council from 1996 to 2006. Under Mayor Buol’s leadership, Dubuque was selected in June 2007 as one of the ten communities in the nation to be named an “All America City” by the National Civic League.
“I am honored to have Mayor Roy Buol’s support. He has been a leader in the Dubuque community for over 12 years,” Hillary Clinton said. “Mayor Buol’s service and dedication to Dubuque is inspiring and represents the type of leadership America needs. He understands the need for change in America and I look forward to working to bring that change.”
Be the lucky person who gets to spend January 8th in New Hampshire with Senator McCain and the campaign staff as we push on to victory! Spend the final 24 hours with us working to turn out our voters and celebrating a great win in the Granite State.
Every person who donates at least $50 between now and January 4th and every maxed out donor to the campaign will be eligible to win this opportunity to be a part of McCain history.
You will stay at one of the official McCain headquarters' hotels on January 7th and 8th, attend the final New Hampshire townhall and rally and work with the campaign volunteers on Election Day Get Out the Vote activities. You will attend the election night hospitality suite and election night Victory Party and be there to cheer on Senator McCain as he wins the New Hampshire Primary!
Just follow this link and donate at least $50 and you will be eligible to be a part of the fun and excitement that is the New Hampshire Primary! We will contact the winner by phone on January 5th so you have time to make your travel arrangements to New Hampshire.
Rick Davis, Campaign Manager
P.S. Don't miss out on this once in a lifetime opportunity to spend Election Day in New Hampshire with the campaign. Click here today and be there when we make history together on January 8th!
Sen. Joe Biden today received the endorsement of three County Democratic Party Chairs in Iowa, Pat Sass, Black Hawk County Party Chair; Jean Hall, Clayton County Chair; and Linda Carrillo, Cedar County Party Chair. All three will serve on the Biden for President Campaign statewide steering committee.
Last night Black Hawk County Party Chair Pat Sass announced her support at a caucus countdown event with Sen. Biden in Waterloo. She served in the Black Hawk Recorders office for 30 years including 16 as the elected Recorder.
"I'm supporting Joe Biden because he's the only candidate in this race who has an exit strategy to get us out of Iraq. But it's about more than the war. We need a president who isn't afraid to act and knows how to solve our biggest problems at home today as well. Joe knows the ticket to the middle class is a union job, and he's ready to fight for workers' rights."
This week, Mo-Joe ’08 is sweeping across Iowa, with Sen. Biden picking up two newspaper endorsements in Jefferson and Sheldon, earning two new legislative endorsements, and packing venues across the Hawkeye State.
Sen. Biden said, “I am tremendously honored to have earned the endorsement of these women who I respect so much, as well as all the local officials who have pledged their support to my campaign. It is vitally important to have local leaders who have earned respect from their communities inside the caucuses. I am proud to have earned the confidence of so many leaders throughout Iowa and know that with their organizational support I will be successful on caucus night.”
These county party leaders have joined an impressive group of local elected officials and state legislators who have endorsed Senator Biden in Iowa. To date, 16 state legislators—and a majority of the House Democratic leadership—have endorsed Senator Biden, including State Sen. Joe Seng (Davenport), House Majority Leader Rep. Kevin McCarthy (Des Moines), Speaker Pro Tempore Rep. Polly Butka (Clinton), Rep. John Whitaker (Hillsboro), Rep. Doris Kelley (Waterloo), Rep. Lisa Heddens (Ames), Rep. Jim Lykam (Davenport), Rep. Mike Reasoner (Creston), Rep. Dick Taylor (Cedar Rapids), Rep. Roger Thomas (Elkader), Rep. McKinley Bailey (Webster City), State Senator Herman C. Quirmbach (Ames), Rep. Mary Gaskill (Ottumwa), Rep. Bruce Hunter (Des Moines), Rep. Eric Palmer (Oskaloosa), and Rep. Dennis Cohoon (Burlington).
U.S. Senator John McCain today issued the following statement regarding the release of a new audio tape from Osama bin Laden:
"Osama bin Laden's latest propaganda message and the assassination of Benazir Bhutto are stark reminders that we are engaged in a worldwide conflict with Islamist extremism, and we cannot relent or waver. We must reassert our determination to prevail in this struggle in which we confront the enemy to all of the values that free peoples cherish. We cannot succumb to the false and dangerous notion that we can retreat or waver on one major front in this war and not embolden our enemies elsewhere. Rather, we must stay on offense against al Qaeda and continue to support the forces of moderation in their life and death battle against the forces of evil and extremism."
"McCain is here once again, crisscrossing the Granite State in his Straight Talk Express tour bus, displaying the same integrity, vision and, yes, straight talk ... At a time when some candidates present themselves to voters as something they haven't always been, we find the Arizona senator to be the genuine article. You might not always agree with his answers, but you won't leave a conversation wondering where he stands." -- Nashua Telegraph
McCain Our Choice For GOP Nomination
Nashua TelegraphDecember 30, 2007
Eight years ago, when he was running as a political maverick against Republican establishment candidate George W. Bush, we endorsed John McCain for the GOP nomination for president of the United States.
We did so because of his integrity.
We did so because of his leadership.
We did so because of his forthrightness and his refusal to pander to voters by telling them what they wanted to hear.
A lot of things have changed in this country during these last eight years, starting with the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, 2001, which resulted in the tragic deaths of nearly 3,000 Americans and led to the invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq.
But not everything has changed. McCain is here once again, crisscrossing the Granite State in his Straight Talk Express tour bus, displaying the same integrity, vision and, yes, straight talk that marked his earlier, unsuccessful run for the presidency.
Oh, and one more thing hasn't changed: our support.
Today, we endorse John McCain for the Republican nomination for president. At a time when some candidates present themselves to voters as something they haven't always been, we find the Arizona senator to be the genuine article. You might not always agree with his answers, but you won't leave a conversation wondering where he stands.
McCain also has established a reputation during his 24-year congressional career as standing up for what he believes -- regardless of whether it's in line with party leaders or his president. If that means working with someone from across the aisle, then so be it.
And it's that kind of leadership -- someone willing to put conscience ahead of party -- that is going to be absolutely critical in persuading Congress to abandon the paralyzing partisanship of the past in order to work together to resolve the many domestic and foreign challenges of the future.
During the course of presidential campaigns, there are usually a handful of memorable moments that resonate with voters.
One of those came during the Republican CNN/YouTube debate of Nov. 28 in St. Petersburg, Fla. In response to a direct question from CNN moderator Anderson Cooper on whether waterboarding is a form of torture, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney went to great lengths to avoid answering the question.
While making clear he opposed torture, Romney said repeatedly that it would be inappropriate for a presidential candidate to describe specifically "which measures we would and would not use."
"Well, Governor," McCain responded, "I'm astonished that you haven't found out what waterboarding is."
When Romney insisted he knew very well what it was but still didn't believe it was appropriate to talk about it, McCain responded that he was "astonished" anyone could actually believe that waterboarding wasn't torture and as such a violation of the Geneva Convention.
"And, Governor, let me tell you, if we're going to get the high ground in this world and we're going to be the America that we have cherished and loved for more than 200 years, we're not going to torture people," McCain said.
That fire-in-the-belly response should come as no surprise to anyone who is familiar with the senator's remarkable pre-congressional career. Graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy. Twenty-two years in the U.S. Navy, interrupted by 5-1/2 years of grueling captivity as a prisoner of war after being shot down in his 23rd bombing mission over North Vietnam in October 1967.
Recipient of the Silver Star, Legion of Merit, Bronze Star, Purple Heart and Distinguished Flying Cross for his courageous service to his country.
John McCain not only has earned our gratitude for his meritorious service to his country, but once again our endorsement for the Republican nomination.
Read Nashua Telegraph Editorial: "McCain Our Choice For GOP Nomination"
Sen. McCain Called For Amnesty; Pushed A Bill Derided As Amnesty
Sen. McCain, 2003: "I think we can set up a program where amnesty is extended to a certain number of people who are eligible…" (C. T. Revere, "McCain Pushes Amnesty, Guest-Worker Program," Tucson Citizen, 5/29/03)
Sen. McCain, 2007: "The fact is that I've never supported amnesty." (ABC's "This Week," 12/30/07)
Sen. McCain Claims He Has "Never Supported Amnesty":
On ABC's "This Week," Sen. McCain Claimed "I've Never Supported Amnesty."
SEN MCCAIN: "The fact is that I've never supported amnesty." (ABC's "This Week," 12/30/07)
Yet As Early As 2003, Sen. McCain Was Specifically Calling For Amnesty:
Sen. McCain, 2003: "Amnesty Has To Be An Important Part." "'Amnesty has to be an important part because there are people who have lived in this country for 20, 30 or 40 years, who have raised children here and pay taxes here and are not citizens. That has to be a component of it,' he said. 'How can we have a temporary worker program if we're not allowing people who have been here for 30 years to hold jobs here?'" (C. T. Revere, "McCain Pushes Amnesty, Guest-Worker Program," Tucson Citizen, 5/29/03)
In 2003, Sen. McCain Also Said, "I Think We Can Set Up A Program Where Amnesty Is Extended To A Certain Number Of People Who Are Eligible..." "'I believe we can pursue the security programs and at the same time set up a system where people can come here and work on a temporary basis. I think we can set up a program where amnesty is extended to a certain number of people who are eligible and at the same time make sure that we have some control over people who come in and out of this country,' he said." (C. T. Revere, "McCain Pushes Amnesty, Guest-Worker Program," Tucson Citizen, 5/29/03)
Sen. McCain Teamed Up With Sen. Ted Kennedy To Push Legislation Widely Derided As Amnesty:
Union Leader Editorial: McCain-Kennedy Proposal "Would Encourage Border Jumping." "Sens. John McCain and Ted Kennedy have a bill that, surprise, includes a generous guest worker program that would encourage border jumping. Illegals who register would have to pay a fine and taxes, but they would get to stay here and apply for permanent residency. That sure beats waiting at the border and hoping to be let in." (Editorial, "Turnstile Security," The [Manchester, NH] Union Leader, 3/27/06)
Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich Said McCain-Kennedy "Actually Provides For Amnesty."
NEWT GINGRICH: "However, the bill you mentioned – the Kennedy McCain bill – actually provides for amnesty. And it provides for amnesty for millions of people whose first act in the U.S. was to break the law. I think amnesty is profoundly wrong. I think it sends exactly the wrong signal." (Fox News' "The Big Story," 3/20/06)
Mark Krikorian: "The McCain/Kennedy Amnesty Bill Has Been Unveiled, And It's The Same Hoax We've Fallen For Before."
"The McCain/Kennedy amnesty bill has been unveiled, and it's the same hoax we've fallen for before. Like the telemarketer who bilks a widow and then comes back in a different guise to charge a fee to 'help' her get the original money back, the anti-borders crowd created today's immigration crisis and is now offering as a solution the very policies that got us in this mess in the first place." (Mark Krikorian, "Fool Me Twice, Shame On Me," National Review, 5/13/05)
Columnist Charles Krauthammer: 2007 Immigration Bill Supported By Sen. McCain Was "Amnesty" And "Vacuous Nonsense." "The immigration compromise being debated in Congress does improve our criteria for selecting legal immigrants. Unfortunately, its inadequacies in dealing with illegal immigration -- specifically, in ensuring that 10 years from now we will not have a new cohort of 12 million demanding amnesty -- completely swamp the good done on legal immigration. … The amnesty is triggered upon presidential certification that these bureaucratic benchmarks are met -- regardless of what is actually happening at the border. What vacuous nonsense." (Charles Krauthammer, Op-Ed, "One Short Amendment," The Washington Post, 5/25/07)
Brian Darling, Heritage Foundation: "It's Clear To Any Reasonable Person That This Is Amnesty." "'It's clear to any reasonable person that this is amnesty,' said Brian Darling, director of Senate relations for the Heritage Foundation, a conservative think tank. 'It's forgiving individuals for being present in the country illegally and working in the country illegally as recently as five months ago.' That, he said, could come back to haunt McCain." (Christi Parsons, "GOP Foes Trade Fire On Immigration," Chicago Tribune, 6/5/07)