Tag Archives: Michele Bachmann

DNC email shows Democrats are worried about impeachment

Nothing happens in politics without a reason.
On Saturday evening, Dec. 28, 2013, the nerve center of the Democratic Party, the Democratic National Committee (DNC), sent out a mass email to its supporters urging them to continue to vote for Democrats.
The reason? – So that Dems could win a majority in the House while retaining their control of the Senate, which will ensure that Republicans can’t impeach Obama.
Translation:

  1. The Demonrats are worried they’ll lose both houses in the upcoming 2014 midterm elections.
  2. The Demonrats are worried Republicans will move to impeach the POS.
  3. The Demonrats know there are legitimate grounds to impeach the POS.

Impeach
Patrick Howley reports for The Daily Caller, Dec. 28, 2013, that the email, subject line “Impeachment,” was sent to Obama for America supporters, imploring them to contribute to the DNC’s 2014 efforts.
“What do these people all have in common?,” the email asked, featuring quotes from Republican Sen. James Inhofe of Oklahoma, Rep. Michele Bachmann of Minnesota, Rep. Kerry Bentivolio of Michigan, and Rep. Blake Farenthold of Texas discussing the possibility of impeaching Obama for one of his numerous instances of presidential misconduct.
The email points out that Democrats need to win 17 GOP House seats to reclaim a majority and urges supporters to “Show these Republicans that they are way, way off-base, and give President Obama a Congress that has his back.”
Here’s the actual email (source: BirtherReport): 

You are receiving this message as an Obama for America supporter.

The Democratic National Committee is solely responsible for the content of this message.

Click here to automatically join the Democrats: 

https://my.democrats.org/Elect-More-Democrats 

Paid for by the Democratic National Committee, 430 South Capitol Street SE, Washington DC 20003. Not authorized by any candidate or candidate’s committee.
Contributions or gifts to the Democratic National Committee are not tax deductible.
This email was sent to ########. Click here to unsubscribe from the Obama for America email list.

######

A couple hours later, the DNC sent out another email solicitation mentioning Obama impeachment:

Friend —

Thanks for saying you’ll stand with Democrats.

This year, Republicans held their first committee hearing on impeaching President Obama.

We can make sure that doesn’t happen again — and get Congress back to work — if we take back the House and protect our Senate majority.

Before Tuesday’s deadline, donate to elect more Democrats.

Thanks.

See also:

Molon Labe!

H/t FOTM’s tina
~Eowyn

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Bachmann Won't Seek Re-Election…. Boo Hoo

Just to let you know I’m not to happy about this.


Tea-Party Favorite and Onetime Presidential Candidate Says Eight Years in the House Is Enough

https://online.wsj.com

By JANET HOOK and NEIL KING JR.

  • Updated May 29, 2013, 7:27 p.m. ET

NA-BW605_BACHMA_G_20130529190202
 
Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann, who won prominence as a leader of the tea-party opposition to President Barack Obama, announced Wednesday she wouldn’t seek re-election—an abrupt retreat less than two years after she briefly topped the ranks of GOP candidates seeking the 2012 presidential nomination.
Mrs. Bachmann’s bid for the White House raised her national profile but also contributed to her political troubles. She barely won re-election to her House seat last year and has since seen inquiries begin into the financial activities of her presidential campaign.
Her fans and foes agree that Mrs. Bachmann has had broad political impact by helping to elevate the tea party’s voice in Congress in its earliest days, when she embraced its founding cause—opposition to Mr. Obama’s health-care law—as her own. “She helped to grow and convert the tea party from a protest movement into a political movement,” said Sal Russo, co-founder of Tea Party Express, a national tea-party group.
But her combative tone drew complaints that it intensified political partisanship. Her “tea-party brand of extremism and obstruction have infected the entire Republican Congress, and her influence shows no signs of waning,” said Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee spokeswoman Emily Bittner.
Mrs. Bachmann’s departure comes amid a change in the public face of the tea party on Capitol Hill, as she has been eclipsed by newcomers that include Sens. Mike Lee of Utah and Ted Cruz of Texas, and Rep. Raúl Labrador (R., Idaho), who seem more inclined to shake up the congressional system from within. Mr. Labrador, for example, is trying to make a legislative mark as member of a group negotiating a bipartisan immigration bill.
By contrast, few of Mrs. Bachmann’s bills have become laws. She secured long-sought funding for a bridge in her district, but her marquee bill to repeal Mr. Obama’s health-care law is going nowhere in the Senate after passing the House this month.
Mrs. Bachmann faced a potentially bruising 2014 re-election race. It was shaping up as a rematch with hotelier Jim Graves, a Democrat, who fell short by about 4,200 votes last year. Her retirement could make it easier for Republicans to hold the seat, in a heavily Republican district outside the Twin Cities, which was in play largely because of Mrs. Bachmann’s controversial profile.
Her decision “relieves House GOP leadership of an unflattering distraction who not only perennially put an otherwise safe GOP seat at risk but damaged the party’s brand nationally,” David Wasserman, analyst of House elections for the Cook Political Report, wrote Tuesday.
Mrs. Bachmann said in a video posted on her website that she had no concerns about her ability to win re-election or about the pending investigations of her presidential campaign. Instead, she said, eight years was enough time serving a House district.
A former Bachmann aide filed a Federal Election Commission complaint in January alleging that her campaign made improper payments to an Iowa state senator. The Office of Congressional Ethics opened an investigation of alleged wrongdoing in connection with her political affairs, according to people familiar with the matter. And a law-enforcement official said Wednesday the Federal Bureau of Investigation was looking into possible campaign irregularities, but cautioned that the effort was at its initial stages and hasn’t become a full investigation. At least one interview has been conducted, and others are planned, the official said.
Her lawyer, William McGinley, wouldn’t comment on the pending investigations. In her video, Mrs. Bachmann said: “It was clearly understood that compliance with all rules and regulations was an absolute necessity for my presidential campaign, and I have no reason to believe that that was not the case.”
Mrs. Bachmann formed the Tea Party Caucus in the House and was a frequent critic on cable TV of Mr. Obama’s 2009 stimulus plan, his health-care overhaul and other administration policies. She gave her own televised “tea-party response” to Mr. Obama’s 2011 State of the Union address, a moment that crystallized her distinctness from other House Republicans but also opened her to jokes on late-night TV, because she gave the speech with her eyes cast away from the camera. She put in several strong debate performances ahead of the GOP presidential primaries and went on to win the Iowa straw poll in August 2011. But she came in sixth in the Iowa caucuses five months later, netting 5% of the vote, and ended her campaign the next day.
—Devlin Barrett and Ben Kesling contributed to this article.
~Steve~
https://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424127887324412604578512511908140272.html?mod=WSJ_hppMIDDLENexttoWhatsNewsSecond

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GOP lineup for November 2012!

How about this for a Republican slate!!
Here is a winning strategy that would set Skippy and his Cronies way, way back on their heels. If Romney would take this advice, it would clearly send a message to the Republican establishment that conservatives aren’t going to do business as usual any more.
It would shake the establishment, and pull together and really energize conservative voters. Here is a little something else this would do…It would shake the Obama campaign to its core.
Rather than a leisurely march toward a VP nominee or a surprise VP announcement like we got in 2008, vet the possible VPs NOW and stand ready to announce the running mate in a nationally televised press conference the day after the delegates are in hand.
Allen West, Vice President
Having Congressman West in the VP slot makes him a TRIPLE THREAT and a VP who WILL redefine the role. Triple threat?

  1. As the Vice President he would attend to the regular duties and be a heartbeat away from the presidency.
  2. Vice President West would also act as a second Secretary of State in difficult diplomatic negotiations.
  3. AND…A Vice President West would work in concert with the Secretary of Defense to realign our military and redefine its role.

Triple threat. Oh but this is just the START of the strategy!!!
As soon as Romney has introduced West as the running mate…ROMNEY WOULD THEN INTRODUCE HIS CHOICE FOR SECRETARY OF STATE!…
John Bolton, SECRETARY OF STATE
As a former Ambassador to the United Nations there is nobody with a better handle on the world’s issues or more familiar with the players. John Bolton is tough, straight forward, and not likely to appease ANYONE.
Now, you have the nominees on stage, the VP choice and the Secretary of State nominee…Let’s not stop there. Next to walk onto the stage…
Sarah Palin, Secretary of Energy
Palin’s directive…Set us on the path toward energy independent in 10 years. Anyone more invested in that goal? Anyone who is more knowledgeable or adept? Can you feel the ground starting to shake? Next out of the wings and onto the stage…
General David Petraeus, Secretary of Defense
The nominee for Secretary of Defense. Enter General David Petraeus. As great as he was fighting a PC war, imagine what he’ll be like once he and West have pressed the reset button on our rules of engagement. In Petraeus we will have a Secretary of Defense whose mission will be to win. PERIOD. When our case is just, VICTORY IS NOT A BAD WORD!
Oh…but we’re not done yet…
Attorney General – Pam Bondi
Bondi is a no nonsense fighter who has taken on the current administration over Obamacare and WILL clean out the corruption rampant in that office today.
Okay, where are we? Who is now standing on the stage? The nominees so far are: Allen West, John Bolton, Sarah Palin, General Petreaus and Pam Bondi. How about a Secretary of the Treasury? We would need someone who has worked for YEARS in the tax field who understands the overwhelming burden of tax codes and who has, for years fought to restructure those codes.
Michele Bachmann, Secretary of the Treasury
By now, fissures should be opening in the ground, rumbling coming from the sky and the faint odor of ozone should be in the air. We will need someone new…someone with new ideas to head up the Fed.
Please welcome Ron Paul. Do ya’ think he’d kick butt? Do you think the Fed would tremble? You betcha!
Governor Bobby Jindal, Secretary of the Interior…
COME ON DOWN!!!!!
And finally…We need someone to head up the Department of Homeland Security. We must have someone who understands the issues we face. Someone who has worked in federal law enforcement. Someone who won’t take any crap from anybody.
Please…a round of applause for…!
Sheriff Joe Arpaio, Department of Homeland Security
Never before has a presidential nominee entered the full-on campaign with a fully assembled team. Can you even imagine the shock-and-awe wave which would be sent through the Obama regime were the Romney to do this? Think about it.
Instead of just Romney against Obama we would have:

Allen West vs. Joe Biden

John Bolton vs. Hillary Clinton

Sarah Palin vs. Stephen Chu

General Petraeus vs. Leon Panetta

Pam Bondi vs. Eric Holder

Michele Bachmann vs. Tim Geithner

Ron Paul vs. Ben Bernanke

Bobby Jindal vs. Ken Salazar

Sheriff Joe Arpaio vs. Janet Napolitano

Think about that!
Let that sink in…all of them campaigning at once. There would be no way out for Obama as each and every key player on his team would be exposed and held to account from the word GO.
It’s bold, brash and completely against any business as usual strategy. Imagine! An entire assembled team of key cabinet positions. Each one a pit-bull on a T-Bone, hammering their liberal counterparts on every issue, every day, from the word GO until November 6th, 2012.
Well, a girl can dream! Not saying I would support each choice yet you have to admit, these choices would have the liberals’ heads exploding! (And some of them might actually do a decent job.)
h/t Kelly
DCG

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Political plastic surgeries

From The Daily Caller 11/21/2011.
In each case, the photo on the left is “before,” the photo on the right is “after”.

As Nancy Pelosi’s politics go further and further to the left, her eyebrows drift higher and higher.

VP Joe Biden

These pics of Hillary Clinton are dated. The “after” photo on the right was taken during the 2008 primary elections when she magically appeared very fresh-faced in those debates with Obama. Since then, her Secretary-of-State globe-trotting must be keeping her from getting botox refills.

Senator John Kerry

Michele Bachmann

Mitt Romney: All those forehead frown lines have magically disappeared!
~Eowyn

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Quiz: Which Candidate Is Most Like You?

USA Today has a quiz you can take to find out which presidential candidate’s views on 11 issues are most similar to yours.
The candidates are, in alphabetical order, Michele Bachmann, Newt Gingrich, Jon Huntsman, Barack Obama, Ron Paul, Rick Perry, Mitt Romney, and Rick Santorum. The issues are:

  1. Afghanistan
  2. Energy
  3. Health care
  4. Medicare
  5. Immigration
  6. Experience
  7. Social Security
  8. Climate change
  9. Taxes
  10. Defense spending
  11. Gay marriage

I took the quiz and must admit I was surprised by the results. Ron Paul’s views are the best fit with mine (66.7% agreement), with Rick Perry being the next (53.4%), followed by Michele Bachmann (46.8%).
But then, like all social science measuring instruments, this quiz is methodologically flawed/inadequate:

  • The quiz gives equal weight to every one of the 11 issues when, in real life, some issues are more important to us than others. And so, although I may agree with Candidate X on a greater number of issues, we are on opposing sides on an issue about which I’m passionate. Whereas, although I may agree with Candidate Y on a fewer number of issues, on the one or two issues about which I care greatly, we are in agreement.
  • The quiz’s scope is 11 issues, leaving out many others, such as education, abortion, the national debt and government spending. Moreover, it’s USA Today who selected those 11 issues because they deem those 11 issues to be important. You or I may disagree.

To conclude, I suggest you take your quiz results with a grain of salt. In the last analysis, you know best which candidate you like, that is assuming you’ve done the homework on the candidates — their qualifications, policy positions, values, and moral character.
To take the quiz, click here.
~Eowyn

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Final Iowa Poll Before Tuesday's Caucuses

From Des Moines Register, 7:30 pm, Dec. 31, 2011:
Mitt Romney tops the latest Des Moines Register Iowa Poll in the closing days before the Iowa caucuses, but Ron Paul and Rick Santorum are poised within striking distance.
The poll, conducted Tuesday through Friday, shows:

Mitt Romney: 24%

Ron Paul: 22%

Rick Santorum: 15%

Newt Gingrich: 12%

Rick Perry: 11%

Michele Bachmann: 7%

But the four-day results don’t reflect just how quickly momentum is shifting in a race that has remained highly fluid for months. If the final two days of polling are considered separately, Santorum rises to second place, with 21%, pushing Paul to third, at 18%. Romney remains the same, at 24%.
“Momentum’s name is Rick Santorum,” said the Register’s pollster, J. Ann Selzer.
Another sign of the race’s volatility: 41% of likely caucusgoers say they could still be persuaded to change their minds.
Selzer & Co. of Des Moines conducted the poll of 602 likely Republican caucusgoers, which has a margin of error of plus or minus 4 percentage points. In the final two days of polling, 302 likely caucusgoers were interviewed, with a margin of error of plus or minus 5.6 percentage points.
The first-in-the-nation Iowa caucuses, which take place Tuesday evening, kick off voting in the presidential nominating process. The Iowa Poll, a Register exclusive since 1943, is a much-watched indicator of how candidates are faring in the leadoff caucus state.
~Eowyn

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Ron Paul Gets Vicious

Ronald Reagan says there’s an 11th Commandment for Republicans: “Thou shalt not speak ill of another Republican.”
On Friday, Dec. 16, 2011, appearing on NBC’s Tonight Show with Jay Leno, the nominally Republican (but really Libertarian) candidate Ron Paul was asked what he thought of his opponents with whom he’s competing to be the GOP presidential nominee.
Paul described Mitt Romney and Newt Gingrich as, respectively, a former Massachusetts governor and former Speaker of the House.
Then, stripping off his genial avuncular mask, Paul turned vicious.
About Congresswoman Michele Bachmann, he had three words: “She hates Muslims.” About former U.S. Senator Rich Santorum, Paul had five words: “He hates gays and Muslims.”
[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1Y7hu469z7k]
So Ron Paul now can read what’s in another’s heart?
By the way, Ron Paul supporters like to tout their man as being a Constitutionalist. Do they know that Paul thinks it’s “irrelevant” whether Obama is constitutionally eligible to be President?
H/t FOTM’s beloved Sage_brush.
~Eowyn

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House Saves the Traditional Light Bulb


The light bulb is dead. Long live the light bulb.
Thanks to last year’s mid-term elections that elected a GOP majority to the House of Representatives, the traditional light bulb is saved from a scheduled ban that would begin on January 1.
The Daily Mail reports that Congresswoman Michele Bachmann (R-Minnesota) had introduced a bill to roll back the incandescent ban. She told ABC News, ‘The American people want less government intrusion into their lives, not more, and that includes staying out of their personal light bulb choices.”

The spending bill passed by the House yesterday over-turns the new supposedly energy-efficiency rules set in 2007 for light bulbs by eliminating the funds the Department of Energy would need to enforce them.
However, ABC reports this doesn’t mean we’ll actually be able to exercise our freedom of light-bulb choice because incandescent bulbs are disappearing off store shelves.

Larry Lauck, a spokesman for the American Lighting Association, said “The industry has moved on” because U.S. light bulb manufacturers have already refitted their production lines to accommodate the new rules — rules that the House just demolished. Joseph Higbee, a spokesman for the National Electrical Manufacturers Association, said that businesses had spent millions into making the transition and a delay in enforcing the new rules undermines the investments made by these manufacturers.
Blah, blah, blah.
Regardless of “the industry” having “moved on” from manufacturing incandescent bulbs, if there’s demand, they will produce them. That’s the free market law of supply and demand!
~Eowyn
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Bachmann is the Voice of America's Conscience

“It is certainly true that a popular government cannot flourish without virtue in the people.” –Richard Henry Lee, letter to Colonel Martin Pickett, 1786

Dr. Daren Jonescu has a good article in the Canada Free Press , Dec. 12, 2011, on Congresswoman Michele Bachmann. I highly recommend you read it in its entirety. Below are excerpts.
It is noteworthy that Bachmann, unlike Rep. Allen West with whom so many conservatives are enamored, was one of the 66 Republicans in the House who voted against the debt deal with Obama last August — the legislation with the oxymoronic name of the Budget Control Act of 2011, which immediately further ballooned the U.S. national debt.
H/t beloved fellow Tina.
~Eowyn

Dr. Jonescue begins by pointing out:
the most serious female presidential candidate in U.S. history—and the one most similar in principles to the early [Magaret] Thatcher—has been treated as an also-ran by both the mainstream and Republican-leaning media, as well as subjected to unfounded accusations of incompetence or instability—from conservatives. 
There was Tim Pawlenty’s suggestion that her susceptibility to headaches (an ailment she shares with Thomas Jefferson) renders her unfit to govern.  Then there was George Will’s judgment, apparently pulled straight out of the ether, that she could not be trusted with her finger on the nuclear trigger.  (They said the same of Reagan.)[…]
No, I do not believe that the Republican Establishment’s objection to Bachmann is that she’s a woman.  The objection, rather, is that she is not a man—where by “man” I mean “an accredited member of the Washington Insider’s Club.”  She doesn’t talk the way we expect modern politicians to talk.  Her public persona, in debates and interviews, does not fall easily within the accepted norms of TV-age politicians.  She tends to speak in bold colors.  She talks about over-arching issues much more comfortably than about niggling details.  She delineates issues with a view to their long-term ramifications, where long-term does not mean two years, but two decades, or two generations.  Worst of all, she infuses all issues about which she speaks with a moral tinge—which is to say that she instinctively hones in on the moral implications of public policy, rather than merely on the pragmatic, outcome-oriented aspect of decision-making.
This last trait, the morality-colored glasses, is particularly troubling to today’s Establishment types, for whom politics is about winning, at least as much as it is about being right.  Bachmann speaks to those who would lose the fight without losing their souls, rather than win a hollow victory.  A Gingrich or Romney presidency would be hollow victory on a grand scale, sucking the wind out of America’s burgeoning constitutionalist revival while doing little—or, more likely, nothing—to change the fundamental premises of the Establishment’s workings.  That is to say, the multi-generational project of rekindling the notion of a constitutional republic, not only in rhetoric but in practice, will require more than lip-service critiques of the current Establishment’s follies.  It will require the slow, bottom-up creation of a new Establishment.  Establishmentarianism, per se, is not the problem; George Washington was the Establishment in his time.  The challenge is to transmogrify the Establishment into something noble, something with purposes and ideals higher than the next election cycle.
[…] civilization needs women.  To put it more simply, America manifestly does not need more “big ideas,” “big schemes,” and “big hopes,”—i.e. more big government.  What she needs is a voice of conscience to speak to the present crisis as a moral crisis of historic proportions. 
It is certain that among this year’s primary contenders, Bachmann has the most credibility as this kind of moral conservative.  By “moral conservative,” I do not mean a Christian conservative, or a social conservative.  (Rick Santorum is also strong in these latter areas, of course.)  I mean someone who can articulate the economic crisis as a moral crisis, and who can propose financial solutions that are grounded in an understanding of the moral nature of the problem.  For this is the only way to change paths in the permanent manner that is required.  The goal cannot be merely to balance the budget, for example.  The goal must be to demonstrate to the electorate that a balanced budget is a practical manifestation of a particular moral position on the relationship between government and citizen.  This is what Bachmann’s manner of articulating the issues achieves most effectively—if people will listen.
Bachmann’s practical problem is that, in the age of TV ratings and Twitter politics, her strength, which is the strength most needed at this time, is obscured.  The superabundance of repetitive, sound-bite-focused debates is most beneficial to the cute talkers, the Six Point Plan guys, the “ironists” in the modern sense.  How would Lincoln, Jefferson, or Madison have fared in such a setting?  It is impossible to know, and speculation is futile.  What can be said, however, is that the ideas that have allowed those men to be regarded as giants today would not have played well in the modern debate format, in which one must make all of one’s arguments in the form of one minute speechettes […]
When Bachmann talks about the impact of the debt on national security, by way of interest owed to China, the audience goes quiet.  When she says 2012 will be America’s last chance to repeal socialized medicine, the audience goes quiet.  When she says she is running for President because she sees that the nation is on the brink of collapse, some think she sounds silly.  When she says the United States is living in a fantasy of being a wealthy nation, while in fact being broke, listeners stare at their hands.  When she says every adult citizen should pay some taxes, some people may cringe a little, thinking, “Oh, she just alienated the 47% who don’t pay taxes.”
Many will regard her as a schoolmarm, a nagging wife, “Nanny Michele.”  In the Christian era, the traditional role of women has indeed included the function of settling men down, civilizing them, reminding them of their responsibilities.  “Eat your peas” is a mother’s dictum.  Men don’t like to be reminded of their souls, which means of their future, but women remind them anyway—and men, along with society as a whole, are better off for it.
Sarah Palin was appealing to many Tea Partiers precisely because of her ability to fight with the boys.  She could take as good as she got, and she wouldn’t back down.  Michele Bachmann’s is a somewhat different appeal.  Attack mode seems unnatural to her.  In the stand-up debates, she looked small among all those men, and seemed uncomfortable trading shots.  […] Like a good wife or mother, she plays the role of conscience very well.  In other words, she is the moral advocate at the table, and in your head, who, if you are not already too far gone, keeps you on the righteous path.  To state this another way, she embodies the best elements of the Tea Party.
At this moment, which, as Bachmann consistently reminds Americans, may truly be the penultimate moment for their nation, it is not enough to have some pretty good policy ideas, as a few of the candidates do, or to look and sound like a politician (not to say statesman) in a way that appeals to the cynics.  One must also know why winning is necessary, and be able to explain it to the voters.  What’s more, one must be able to instill in the citizens of a pop culture world a sense, not only of history, but of the faint death-cry of a too long-neglected future.  The task is Herculean—perhaps, in fact, too much to hope for from any one man.  So how about trying one woman?”

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A German's View of Our GOP Candidates

Truth be told, among the writers and readers of Fellowship of the Minds, there is no great enthusiasm for the current crop of GOP presidential candidates. That being said, this German’s view of the candidates is nothing less than brutal, calling the candidates “liars,” “demagogues,” “ignoramuses,” and downright “farcical.”
He is Marc Pitzke, the U.S. correspondent for the German weekly news magazine Der Spiegel. Before we totally dismiss him, I say it’s still interesting to find out how an outsider perceives us.
~Eowyn

A ship of fools? (photo by Reuters)


The Republicans’ Farcical Candidates: A Club of Liars, Demagogues and Ignoramuses
A Commentary by Marc Pitzke – Der Spiegel – Dec. 1, 2011
Africa is a country. In Libya, the Taliban reigns. Muslims are terrorists; most immigrants are criminal; all Occupy protesters are dirty. And women who feel sexually harassed — well, they shouldn’t make such a big deal about it.
Welcome to the wonderful world of the US Republicans. Or rather, to the twisted world of what they call their presidential campaigns. For months now, they’ve been traipsing around the country with their traveling circus, from one debate to the next, one scandal to another, putting themselves forward for what’s still the most powerful job in the world.
As it turns out, there are no limits to how far they will stoop.
It’s true that on the road to the White House all sorts of things can happen, and usually do. No campaign can avoid its share of slip-ups, blunders and embarrassments. Yet this time around, it’s just not that funny anymore. In fact, it’s utterly horrifying.
It’s horrifying because these eight so-called, would-be candidates are eagerly ruining not only their own reputations and that of their party, the party of Lincoln lore. Worse: They’re ruining the reputation of the United States.
‘Freakshow’
They lie. They cheat. They exaggerate. They bluster. They say one idiotic, ignorant, outrageous thing after another. They’ve shown such stark lack of knowledge — political, economic, geographic, historical — that they make George W. Bush look like Einstein and even cause their fellow Republicans to cringe.
“When did the GOP lose touch with reality?” wonders Bush’s former speechwriter David Frum in New York Magazine. In the New York Times, Kenneth Duberstein, Ronald Reagan’s former chief-of-staff, called this campaign season a “reality show,” while Wall Street Journal columnist and former Reagan confidante Peggy Noonan even spoke of a “freakshow.”
That may be the most appropriate description.
Tough times demand tough and smart minds. But all these dopes have to offer are ramblings that insult the intelligence of all Americans — no matter if they are Democrats, Republicans or neither of the above. Yet just like any freakshow, this one would be unthinkable without a stage (in this case, the media, strangling itself with all its misunderstood “political correctness” and “objectivity”) and an audience (the party base, which this year seems to have suffered a political lobotomy).
Factually Challenged
And so the farce continues. The more mind-boggling its incarnations, the happier the US media are to cheer first one clown and then the next, elevating and then eliminating “frontrunners” in reliable news cycles of about 45 days.
Take Herman Cain, “businessman.” He sat out the first wave of sexual harassment claims against him by offering a peculiar argument: Most ladies he had encountered in his life, he said, had not complained.
In the most recent twist, a woman accused Cain of having carried on a 13-year affair with her. That, too, he tried to casually wave off, but now, under pressure, he says he wants to “reassess” his campaign.
If Cain indeed drops out, the campaign would lose its biggest caricature: He has been the most factually challenged of all these jesters.
As CEO of the “Godfather’s” pizza chain, Cain killed jobs — but now poses as the job-creator-in-chief. Meanwhile, he seems to lack basic economic know-how, let alone a rudimentary grasp of politics or geography. Libya confounds him. He does not believe that China is a nuclear power. And all other, slightly more complicated questions get a stock answer: “Nine-nine-nine!” Remember? That’s Cain’s tax reduction plan that would actually raise taxes for 84 percent of Americans.
Has any of that disrupted Cain’s popularity in the media or with his fan base? Far from it. Since Oct. 1, he has collected more than $9 million in campaign donations. Enough to plow through another onslaught of denouements.
No Shortage of Chutzpah
Then there’s Newt Gingrich, the current favorite. He’s a political dinosaur, dishonored and discredited. Or so we thought. Yet just because he studied history and speaks in more complex sentences than his rivals, the US media now reflexively hails him as a “Man of Ideas” (The Washington Post) — even though most of these ideas are lousy if not downright offensive, such as firing unionized school janitors, so poor children could do their jobs.
Pompous and blustering, Gingrich gets away with this humdinger as well as with selling himself as a Washington outsider — despite having made millions of dollars as a lobbyist in Washington. At least the man’s got chutzpah.
The hypocrisy doesn’t end here. Gingrich claims moral authority on issues such as the “sanctity of marriage,” yet he’s been divorced twice. He sprang the divorce on his first wife while she was sick with cancer. (His supporters’ excuse: It’s been 31 years, and she’s still alive.) He cheated on his second wife just as he was pressing ahead with Bill Clinton’s impeachment during the Monica Lewinsky affair, unaware of the irony. The woman he cheated with, by the way, was one of his House aides and 23 years his junior — and is now his perpetually smiling third wife.
Americans have a short memory. They forget, too, that Gingrich was driven out of Congress in disgrace, the first speaker of the house to be disciplined for ethical wrongdoing. Or that he consistently flirts with racism when he speaks of Barack Obama. Or that he enjoyed a $500,000 credit line at Tiffany’s just as his campaign was financially in the toilet and he ranted about the national debt. Chutzpah, indeed.
Yet the US media rewards him with a daily kowtow. And the Republicans reward him too, by having put him on top in the latest polls. Mr. Hypocrisy, the bearer of his party’s hope.
“I think he’s doing well just because he’s thinking,” former President Clinton told the conservative online magazine NewsMax. “People are hungry for ideas that make some sense.” Sense? Apparently it’s not just the Republicans who have lost their minds here.
The Eternal Runner-Up
And what about the other candidates? Rick Perry’s blunders are legendary. His “oops” moment in suburban Detroit. His frequently slurred speech, as if he was drunk. His TV commercials putting words in Obama’s mouth that he didn’t say (such as, “Americans are ‘lazy'”). His preposterous claim that as governor of Texas he created 1 million jobs, when the total was really just about 100,000. But what’s one digit? Elsewhere, Perry would have long ago been disqualified. But not here in the US.
Meanwhile, Michele Bachmann has fallen off the wagon, although she’s still tolerated as if she’s a serious contender. Ron Paul’s fan club gets the more excited, the more puzzling his comments get. Jon Huntsman, the only one who occasionally makes some sort of sense, has been relegated to the poll doldrums ever since he showed sympathy for the Occupy Wall Street demonstrators.
Which leaves Mitt Romney, the eternal flip-flopper and runner-up, who by now is almost guaranteed to clinch the nomination, even though no one in his party seems to like or want him. He stiffly delivers his talking points, which may or may not contradict his previous positions. After all, he’s been practicing this since 2008, when he failed to snag the nomination from John McCain. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.
As an investor, Romney once raked in millions and, like Cain, killed jobs along the way. So now he says he’s the economy’s savior. To prove that, he has presented an economic plan that the usually quite conservative business magazine Forbes has labeled “dangerous,” asking incredulously, “About Mitt Romney, the Republicans can’t be serious.” Apparently they’re not, but he is, running TV spots against Obama already, teeming with falsehoods.
Good for Ratings
What a nice club that is. A club of liars, cheaters, adulterers, exaggerators, hypocrites and ignoramuses. “A starting point for a chronicle of American decline,” was how David Remnick, the editor of the New Yorker, described the current Republican race.
The Tea Party would take issue with that assessment. They cheer the loudest for the worst, only to see them fail, as expected, one by one. Which goes to show that this “movement,” sponsored by Fox News, has never been interested in the actual business of governing or in the intelligence and intellect that requires. They are only interested in marketing themselves, for ratings and dollars.
So the US elections are a reality show after all, a pseudo-political counterpart to the Paris Hiltons, Kim Kardashians and all the “American Idol” and “X Factor” contestants littering today’s TV. The cruder, the dumber, the more bizarre and outlandish — the more lucrative. Especially for Fox News, whose viewers were recently determined by Fairleigh Dickinson University to be far less informed than people who don’t watch TV news at all.
Maybe that’s the solution: Just ignore it all, until election day. Good luck with that — this docudrama with its soap-opera twists is way too enthralling. The latest rumor du jour involves a certain candidate who long ago seemed to have disappeared from the radar. Now she may be back, or so it is said, to bring order into this chaos. Never mind that her name is synonymous with chaos: Sarah Palin.

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