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Conservatives have every reason to be optimistic

Freedom and opportunity are on the horizon with a new crop of principled, capable and positive conservatives. 

by George Landrith   bright-future-optimism-optimistic

In the past few weeks and the next couple weeks, we will see most of the expected entrants into the GOP presidential sweepstakes make their plans official. The GOP bench is deep with a number of highly credible and well qualified potential nominees. Part of this deep bench is the result of the conservatives doing well in a majority of the non-presidential and state elections during President Barack Obama’s time in office. The GOP has gained 70 seats in Congress and 910 state legislators around the nation since Barack Obama took office.

If you’re a conservative, there is a lot more good news on the horizon. That deep bench of well-qualified and highly credible candidates is revealing itself in congressional elections around the nation. Speaking with campaign experts around the nation, one thing is clear — the GOP has a bumper crop of great conservative candidates.

I can’t write about each of them, but perhaps I can pick one that caught my eye and shows real promise. In Florida’s 18th Congressional District, an established name is retiring from the House of Representatives to pursue the U.S. Senate seat being vacated by Sen. Marco Rubio. Rick Kozell has announced his candidacy for the open congressional seat in the Treasure Coast and Palm Beach area.

Here’s what I like about Rick Kozell — he’s an optimistic, principled conservative with a winning vision for the future. He reminds me of a young Ronald Reagan. The press will have a hard time casting him as the stereotypical angry conservative. Kozell is affable, young, smart, and articulate. His smile is natural and his energy and enthusiasm are obvious. [Read more...]

Obama’s Year In Review

ISIS, Ferguson, the Senate, Ukraine, Ebola, border kids. Really, this was a pretty awful sixth year for the president. Not that he’s acting like it.

by James Oliphant     •     National Journal

Smug-ObamaYou can make a compelling case that 2014 was the worst year for President Obama since, well, the year before. And, in fact, the president spent much of this year trying to recover from some body blows he took in the final months of 2013, when, in short order, Congress rebuffed him on Syria and the federal health care exchange imploded.

Those setbacks ate away at Obama’s public support. According to Gallup, the president began 2014 with a 41 percent approval rating, and he’s ending it a tick or two higher. He’s also ending the year as a certified lame duck, facing two final years with a hostile Congress and the political conversation centering around the likes of Hillary Clinton, Jeb Bush, and Rand Paul. [Read more...]

President Impervious

by Stephen F Hayes     •     The Weekly Standard

Obama SmirkAt the end of his opening statement at the traditional postelection presidential press conference, Barack Obama offered this assurance: “I continue to believe we are simply more than just a collection of red and blue states,” he said. “We are the United States.”

Those words were a deliberate echo of the memorable keynote address he delivered a decade ago at the 2004 Democratic National Convention. They were powerful then because his passionate delivery suggested he deeply believed them, and because many Americans wanted to believe them, too. [Read more...]

Conservatives Surprising Edge on Diversity

By John Avlon     •     CNN

us-midterm-election-results-2014Editor’s note: John Avlon is a CNN contributor and senior political columnist for Newsweek and The Daily Beast. He is co-editor of the book “Deadline Artists: America’s Greatest Newspaper Columns.” He is a regular contributor to “Erin Burnett OutFront” and is a member of the OutFront Political Strike Team. For more political analysis, tune in to “Erin Burnett OutFront” at 7 ET weeknights.

Everybody knows the Republican Party is basically an all-white bastion, right? After all, even Colin Powell condemned the “dark vein of intolerance” that has flowed through his party since the post-civil rights era political realignment.

Now with President Barack Obama leading the Democrats into a second term — buoyed by overwhelming victory margins among African-Americans and Hispanics — it’s clear the GOP has some serious catching up to do. [Read more...]

Voter Fraud and Voter I.D.

by Thomas Sowell     •     Townhall.com

VOTE-FRAUD-Head in SandOne of the biggest voter frauds may be the idea promoted by Attorney General Eric Holder and others that there is no voter fraud, that laws requiring voters to have a photo identification are just attempts to suppress black voting.

Reporter John Fund has written three books on voter fraud and a recent survey by Old Dominion University indicates that there are more than a million registered voters who are not citizens, and who therefore are not legally entitled to vote. [Read more...]

A Rejection of Liberal Democratic Governance

by Fred Barnes     •     Weekly Standard

government incompetenceRepublicans won 7 Democratic seats (so far!), lost none, and took control of the Senate. Harry Reid is history. Democrats thought for sure they’d add some governorships. Nope. They won one but lost 4, including the governor’s race in the bluest of blue states, Maryland. In the House, they lost at least 8 seats, probably more when the final results are in. Now there are more House Republicans on Capitol Hill than we’ve seen in many decades.

For Democrats in the midterm election, it came down to this: they defeated Republican Gov. Tom Corbett in Pennsylvania. That was it. Nothing more. The next most embattled GOP governor, Sam Brownback in Kansas, was reelected. [Read more...]

Voters’ Verdict Explodes Liberal Myths

by Byron York     •     The Washington Examiner

us-midterm-election-results-2014As Democratic losses mounted in Senate races across the country on election night, some liberal commentators clung to the idea that dissatisfied voters were sending a generally anti-incumbent message, and not specifically repudiating Democratic officeholders. But the facts of the election just don’t support that story.

Voters replaced Democratic senators with Republicans in Arkansas, Colorado, Iowa, North Carolina, Montana, South Dakota, West Virginia and likely in Alaska, and appear on track to do so in a runoff next month in Louisiana. At the same time, voters kept Republicans in GOP seats in heavily contested races in Georgia, Kansas and Kentucky. That is at least 10, and as many as a dozen, tough races, without a single Republican seat changing hands. Tuesday’s voting was a wave alright — a very anti-Democratic wave. [Read more...]

A Harsh Referendum for Obama

by Carol E Lee     •     The Wall Street Journal

obama_31President Barack Obama hoped the midterm elections would help break the capital’s gridlock. Instead, they became a referendum on his presidency.

Voters went to the polls Tuesday deeply frustrated with the political system and handed Republicans a decisive victory. Mr. Obama was a central figure in key races where Republicans criticized his leadership.

Most Democratic Senate candidates refused to appear with Mr. Obama on the campaign trail, trying to distance themselves from an unpopular president. Democrats tried to keep the focus on policies of particular importance in their states. [Read more...]

In Illinois, Vote Fraud Called ‘Calibration Error’

Investors Business Daily

VOTE-FRAUD-Head in SandAs early voting begins in the Land of Lincoln, President Obama casts his ballot and a Republican state senator voting for himself finds that his ballot was counted for his opponent. Eric Holder, call your office.

The day after resigning as attorney General, Eric Holder told the Congressional Black Caucus that the voter ID laws he and his Justice Department opposed were answers to a problem that “doesn’t exist.” Yet when President Obama left the golf course Monday to vote early in his home state of Illinois, he was asked to present his ID before casting his ballot. [Read more...]

What Election? Network News Gives Up On Covering Midterms

by Noah Rothman     •     Hot Air

vote-button-1It is probably safe to assume that you have been following the midterm elections closely. You decided to click on this link, which would indicate that you have at least a passing interest in the coming national vote in which Americans will determine which party controls the upper chamber of Congress for the remainder of the Obama presidency. If, however, you have been closely following the coverage of the coming midterms, you might have noticed that network news outlets do not appear to share your enthusiasm. You’re not imagining things.

According to an exhaustive study performed by Media Research Center analysts, between September 1 and October 20, the three major broadcast networks only bothered to mention the fact that there is a critical election coming up only 25 times. Of those mentions, only 16 of them were in the context of packaged report. [Read more...]

Free Speech Needs No Amending

Senate Democrats would restrict fundamental First Amendment rights in an election-year stunt

FreeSpeech_first amendmentAs election season enters full swing, Senate Democrats are taking the opportunity to garner votes by attempting to rewrite the Bill of Rights, something that hasn’t been done since those rights were enshrined. They want to ask the nation to change the First Amendment so that it protects political speech only up to a point.

The timing is right. Nationally eight Senate races have already received more than $10 million each in outside spending, according to the Federal Election Commission. In Michigan, huge amounts of outside money have flooded into the race between Rep. Gary Peters and former Secretary of State Terri Lynn Land. [Read more...]

Changing the Benghazi Talking Points

How they were changed to obscure the truth   

by Stephen F. Hayes    Obama Benghazi Gate

Even as the White House strove last week to move beyond questions about the Benghazi attacks of Tuesday, September 11, 2012, fresh evidence emerged that senior Obama administration officials knowingly misled the country about what had happened in the days following the assaults. The Weekly Standard has obtained a timeline briefed by the Office of the Director of National Intelligence detailing the heavy substantive revisions made to the CIA’s talking points, just six weeks before the 2012 presidential election, and additional information about why the changes were made and by whom. [Read more...]

The Electoral College — The Last Round

by Gordon S. Jones  vote-button-1

My last column on the Electoral College prompted a number of thoughtful responses, so I would like to deal with those, and then make some general points in (qualified) support of the Electoral College itself.

One reader produced polling results demonstrating that support for the elimination of the EC and its replacement with a direct popular election of the president runs between 70 and 80 percent in every state in the country.

With opposition like that, it is quite astonishing that the EC can survive. Surely it must have some things going for it. I shall try to explain what those are as I go along. [Read more...]

More on Electoral College “Reform”

by Gordon S. Joneselectoralcollege

Now that a Virginia state senator has dropped plans to re-work his state’s method of allocating votes in the Electoral College, let’s consider some other proposals for “improving” this venerable, if somewhat creaky, institution.

One, called the National Popular Vote Interstate Compact, comes out of California, home to many nutty ideas, though this particular one has been endorsed by some conservatives as well, including Utah’s always interesting state senator Howard Stephenson. In brief, the Compact would require the Electors of each compacting state to cast their ballot in the Electoral College for the winner of the national popular vote majority. [Read more...]

[Movie review] Lincoln: A President Engaged in a Great Civil War

“The genius of ‘Lincoln,’ finally, lies in its vision of politics as a noble, sometimes clumsy dialectic of the exalted and the mundane. Our habit of argument, someone said recently, is a mark of our liberty.”

by A. O. SCOTT

It is something of a paradox that American movies — a great democratic art form, if ever there was one — have not done a very good job of representing American democracy. Make-believe movie presidents are usually square-jawed action heroes, stoical Solons or ineffectual eggheads, blander and more generically appealing than their complicated real-life counterparts, who tend to be treated deferentially or ignored entirely unless they are named Richard Nixon.

The legislative process — the linchpin of our system of checks and balances — is often treated with lofty contempt masquerading as populist indignation, an attitude typified by the aw-shucks anti-politics of “Mr. Smith Goes to Washington.” Hollywood dreams of consensus, of happy endings and box office unity, but democratic government can present an interminable tale of gridlock, compromise and division. The squalor and vigor, the glory and corruption of the Republic in action have all too rarely made it onto the big screen. [Read more...]