Monday, March 31, 2008
Young voters may not remember McCain's heroic past
By Steve Holland
MERIDIAN, Mississippi (Reuters) - Republican presidential candidate John McCain takes a walk down memory lane this week by visiting the places that were important to the upbringing of an impetuous youth from a military family.
While Democratic candidates Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama battle for their party's nomination, Arizona Sen. McCain has the luxury of spending the week re-introducing himself to the American people.
A weeklong "Service to America" tour for McCain starts on Monday in Mississippi, where generations of McCains were born and raised on land that had been in the family since 1848.
It will also take him to suburban Washington, where he attended high school, to the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland, where he had a reputation for bucking authority and finished near the bottom of his class, and on to Florida, where he trained as an naval aviator. He ends up in his home state of Arizona.
The McCain campaign hopes to not only give Americans a fresh look at his service to the country, but also allow McCain to grab some of the spotlight of the presidential campaign from the Democrats, who are getting most of the headlines with their closely fought battle.
McCain comes from a storied military family.
"We trace my family's martial heritage back to the Revolution. A distant ancestor served on General (George) Washington's staff, and it seems my ancestors fought in most wars in our nation's history," he will say on Monday. The naval airfield in Meridian, where McCain was once a flight instructor is named for his grandfather and namesake, John Sidney McCain. Both his grandfather and his father of the same name were admirals
His grandfather watched the Japanese surrender aboard the U.S. ship Missouri in 1945, then dropped dead four days later. His father was a submariner who went on to command all U.S. forces in the Pacific during the Vietnam War.
"I have been an imperfect servant of my country for many years. But I am their son, and they showed me how to love my country, and that has made all the difference for me," McCain will say, according to speech excerpts released by his campaign.
McCain, who will use his remarks to outline some of the principles he will follow if elected president in November, pledging to work to engineer new retraining programs for workers who lose their job in the weak U.S. economy.
Wednesday, March 26, 2008
"Senator Obama's blatant mischaracterizations aren't the new politics he's promised America, they're the old attack and smear tactics that Americans are tired of. "Barack Obama's diagnosis for our housing market is clearly that Barack Obama knows best -- raise taxes on hardworking Americans and give government a prescription to spend. "John McCain has called for an immediate and balanced approach to provide transparency and accountability in an effort to help homeowners who are hurting, while Barack Obama has made a $10 billion election-year promise that is sure to raise taxes and handcuff an already struggling economy."
Tuesday, March 25, 2008
Sen. McCain's remarks on economy today from Santa Ana, CA
from POLITICO MAFIOSO by Tony GOPrano
By John McCain, Candidate for President of the United States
"Thank you for joining me here today. I just returned from a trip overseas that included assessing the state of affairs in Iraq, the Middle East, and Europe. I will have more to say on those important issues in the days and weeks to come.
While I was traveling overseas, our financial markets experienced another round of upheaval. This market turmoil leaves many Americans feeling both concerned and angry. People see the value of their homes fall at the same time that the price of gasoline and food is rising. Already tight household budgets are getting tighter. A lot of Americans read the headlines about credit crunches and liquidity crises and ask: “How did we get here?” In the end, the motivation and behaviors that caused the current crisis are not terribly complicated, even though the alphabet soup of financial instruments is complex.
The past decade witnessed the largest increase in home ownership in the past 50 years. Home ownership is part of the American dream, and we want as many Americans as possible to be able to afford their own home. But in the process of a huge, and largely positive, upturn in home construction and ownership, a housing bubble was created. A bubble occurs when prices are driven up too quickly, speculators move into markets, and these players begin to suspend the normal rules of risk and assume that prices can only move up - but never down. We've seen this kind of bubble before - in the late 1990s, we had the technology bubble, when money poured into technology stocks and people assumed that those stock values would rise indefinitely.
Between 2001 and 2006, housing prices rose by nearly 15 percent every year. The normal market forces of people buying and selling their homes were overwhelmed by rampant speculation. Our system of market checks and balances did not correct this until the bubble burst. A sustained period of rising home prices made many home lenders complacent, giving them a false sense of security and causing them to lower their lending standards. They stopped asking basic questions of their borrowers like "can you afford this home? Can you put a reasonable amount of money down?" Lenders ended up violating the basic rule of banking: don’t lend people money who can’t pay it back. Some Americans bought homes they couldn't afford, betting that rising prices would make it easier to refinance later at more affordable rates.
There are 80 million family homes in America and those homeowners are now facing the reality that the bubble has burst and prices go down as well as up.Of those 80 million homeowners, only 55 million have a mortgage at all, and 51 million are doing what is necessary – working a second job, skipping a vacation, and managing their budgets – to make their payments on time. That leaves us with a puzzling situation: how could 4 million mortgages cause this much trouble for us all?
The other part of what happened was an explosion of complex financial instruments that weren't particularly well understood by even the most sophisticated banks, lenders and hedge funds. To make matters worse, these instruments - which basically bundled together mortgages and sold them to others to spread risk throughout our capital markets - were mostly off-balance sheets, and hidden from scrutiny. In other words, the housing bubble was made worse by a series of complex, inter-connected financial bets that were not transparent or fully understood. That means they weren't always managed wisely because people couldn't properly quantify the risk or the value of these bets. And because these instruments were bundled and sold and resold, it became harder and harder to find and connect up a real lender with a real borrower. Capital markets work best when there is both accountability and transparency. In the case of our current crisis, both were lacking.
Because managers did not fully understand the complex financial instruments and because there was insufficient transparency when they did try to learn, the initial losses spawned a crisis of confidence in the markets. Market players are increasingly unnerved by the uncertainty surrounding the level of risk, liability and loss currently in the financial system. Banks no longer trust each other and are increasingly unwilling to put their money to work. Credit is drying up and liquidity is now severely limited – and small business and hard-working families find themselves unable to get their usual loans.The net result is the crisis we face. What started as a problem in subprime loans has now convulsed the entire financial system.
Let's start with some straight talk:
I will not play election year politics with the housing crisis. I will evaluate everything in terms of whether it might be harmful or helpful to our effort to deal with the crisis we face now.I have always been committed to the principle that it is not the duty of government to bail out and reward those who act irresponsibly, whether they are big banks or small borrowers. Government assistance to the banking system should be based solely on preventing systemic risk that would endanger the entire financial system and the economy.In our effort to help deserving homeowners, no assistance should be given to speculators.
Any assistance for borrowers should be focused solely on homeowners, not people who bought houses for speculative purposes, to rent or as second homes. Any assistance must be temporary and must not reward people who were irresponsible at the expense of those who weren’t. I will consider any and all proposals based on their cost and benefits. In this crisis, as in all I may face in the future, I will not allow dogma to override common sense.When we commit taxpayer dollars as assistance, it should be accompanied by reforms that ensure that we never face this problem again. Central to those reforms should be transparency and accountability.Homeowners should be able to understand easily the terms and obligations of a mortgage. In return, they have an obligation to provide truthful financial information and should be subject to penalty if they do not.
Lenders who initiate loans should be held accountable for the quality and performance of those loans and strict standards should be required in the lending process. We must have greater transparency in the lending process so that every borrower knows exactly what he is agreeing to and where every lender is required to meet the highest standards of ethical behavior.Policies should move toward ensuring that homeowners provide a responsible down payment of equity at the initial purchase of a home.
I therefore oppose reducing the down payment requirement for FHA mortgages and believe that, as conditions allow, the down payment requirement should be raised. So many homeowners have found themselves owing more than their home is worth, because many never had much equity in the house to begin with. When conditions return to normal, GSEs (Government Sponsored Enterprises) should never insure loans when the homeowner clearly does not have skin in the game.In financial institutions, there is no substitute for adequate capital to serve as a buffer against losses. Our financial market approach should include encouraging increased capital in financial institutions by removing regulatory, accounting and tax impediments to raising capital.I am prepared to examine new proposals and evaluate them based on these principals.
But I think we need to do two things right away. First, it is time to convene a meeting of the nation's accounting professionals to discuss the current mark to market accounting systems. We are witnessing an unprecedented situation as banks and investors try to determine the appropriate value of the assets they are holding and there is widespread concern that this approach is exacerbating the credit crunch. We should also convene a meeting of the nation's top mortgage lenders. Working together, they should pledge to provide maximum support and help to their cash-strapped, but credit worthy customers. They should pledge to do everything possible to keep families in their homes and businesses growing.
Recall that immediately after September 11, 2001 General Motors stepped in to provide 0 percent financing as part of keeping the economy growing.
We need a similar response by the mortgage lenders.
They've been asking the government to help them out. I'm now calling upon them to help their customers, and their nation out. It's time to help American families.More important than the events of the past is the promise of the future. The American economy is resilient and diverse. Even as financial troubles weigh upon it other parts of the economy hold up or even continue to grow. I have spoken at length in other settings about the need to keep taxes low on our families, entrepreneurs, and small businesses; to make the tax code simpler and fair by eliminating the Alternative Minimum Tax that the middle class was never intended to pay; to improve the ability of our companies to compete by reducing our corporate tax rate, which today are the second highest rates in the world;to provide investment incentives; to control rising health care costs that threaten the budgets of our businesses and families; to improve education and training programs; and to ensure our ability to sell to the 95 percent of the world’s customers that lie outside U.S. borders.
These are important steps to strengthen the foundations of the millions of businesses small and large that provide jobs for American workers. There is no government program or policy that is a substitute for a good job. These steps would also strengthen the U.S. dollar and help to control the rising cost of living that hurts our families. These are important issues in this campaign and the debate with my Democrat rivals. But I will get my chance to talk further another day. Now I look forward to hearing from our small business owners – the very lifeblood of our economy."
Sunday, March 23, 2008
Saturday, March 22, 2008
from The Full Feed from HuffingtonPost.com by Paul Abrams
The Bush Administration has been so disastrous, and Republican
Congressional rule so complicit and corrupt, that it seems to follow, "as the
night the day", that the Democrats must take over just to staunch the
But, what have the Democrats done to show they would do better? Where
is the leadership? Rather than cut funds for the Iraq War, and put the onus on
the commander-in-chief to insure the safety of the troops with funding
withdrawn, they capitulated. There are more troops in Iraq today, spending more
US tax dollars, than there were when the Democrats won back Congress in November
2006. More US servicemen and women lost their lives in 2007 than in any prior
year. Not exactly a leadership record to run on. Many excuses, but no
Because of the unusual situation presented by the Democratic
nomination, Democratic Party leaders have a clear opportunity to show they can
lead. Will they take it? Are they capable? That's what the next few weeks will
As I understand it, the Clintons plan to do very well in the remaining
primaries, and then develop an argument for their nomination. Argument? My
middle school civics taught me that elections make choices, not arguments.
But, here's an argument: Bill Clinton was in 3rd place, behind both
George HW Bush and Ross Perot, going into the 1992 convention. So, what is the
"argument" for superdelegates to divine who will win the November election from
There are 3 potential outcomes to the Presidential nomination race.
Following a protracted, scorched-earth battle, either Hillary or Obama wins the
nomination. Each of those two outcomes provides McCain a likely victory. Equally
importantly, it will have shown--again--that Democrats have a genetic disability
The third potential outcome is that Obama wins the nomination within a
few weeks. Yes, that means that Hillary drops out. No further scorched earth. No
financial exhaustion of donors. Time to build a consensus. Time to take on John
A dream? Certainly, if the assumption were that Hillary would awaken
one morning, realize her path to the nomination is a pyrrhic victory at best,
and decide to do something not only for her party, but for progressive policies.
Hillary Clinton is no Lou Gehrig---taking himself out of the lineup "for the
good of the team".
Nor should she should be blamed. Our political system is not organized
to enable such a selfless act. Consider all the people who have hitched their
wagons to a Hillary victory, not to mention people like Mark Penn who are
vacuuming in millions of dollars from her continued campaigning---all will be
assuring her that the path to her nomination is real, and that they will deal
with the implications for the general election when they get there.
however, an alternative. It is called leadership.
At one point during another Republican scandal, Watergate, Barry
Goldwater reportedly went to the White House and told Nixon, "it's over". Soon
thereafter, Nixon's remaining support in Congress eroded, and the wheels were
set in motion for Nixon's resignation.
Superdelegates are a diffuse group of
people, scattered around the country, who do not act in unison nor do a few
here-or-there carry much weight.
There is, however, a subset of superdelegates ("SuperDuper Delegates")
that do have such clout. Like Barry Goldwater for the Republicans, there are
major Democratic leaders, Hillary supporters, who could go to Senator Clinton
and say, "it's over".
I do not underestimate how uncomfortable such a meeting
would be. These people are colleagues, and future colleagues, of Senator
Clinton. Many, like Bill Richardson, worked with the Clintons in the 1990s.
Moreover, for them to say "it's over" to Hillary is to change their own
position, and thus to appear as if they are fair-weather friends.
All true, if the key question for the SuperDuper delegates ought to be
their personal loyalty to Hillary. It is not. Hillary had her run, she was
inevitable, but, absent a scorched earth campaign that would make it unlikely
for any Democrat to win, she has lost it.
The SuperDuper delegates should run
through the scenarios in their own minds of a Democratic party united now,
getting its act together for the fall election, and beginning a decade or two
rule for progressive politics. We will be able to run against George Bush for
two generations---and the Republicans know it!
But, that will not happen if they sit idly by, knowing the hard
reality, and do nothing. Right now, they want others to do something.
The question for the SuperDuper delegates is leadership. It is tough,
but they were not elected to make easy decisions, or to allow events to play
themselves out so that they would not have to make the decisions. If that is all
they do, why do we need them? Why would we follow them?
It is their job, as
leaders, to recognize likely outcomes, weigh chances vs. alternatives, and to
take action before mutually destructive behavior occurs. Show they can make some
uncomfortable, but necessary, decisions.
Or ... (my thoughts now) will McCain win either way, and a contested democratic convention will be a chance to teach out kids what a convention is and how it works.
Friday, March 21, 2008
For more news articles and press releases, go to http://www.johnmccain.com/.
Fortune: Why McCain Has The Best Health-Care Plan
Financial Times Op-ed: John McCain: America Must Be A Good Role Model
Stamford Advocate: Lieberman Explains Support For McCain
Weekly Standard: Looking Presidential
East Valley Tribune: Exploring McCain's Political Roots
Philadelphia Inquirer: McCain Is A Good Friend To The Unborn
Wall Street Journal: The Conservative Case For McCain
Washington Post: Hard-Won Progress In Baghdad
Philadelphia Inquirer (PA): Raising McCain In Pennsylvania
Wall Street Journal: McCain Expands High-Tech Toehold
Washington Times March 21, 2008
By John Boehner (got the alert from John Boehner on Twitter)
House Republicans have taken a stand against wasteful Washington spending by calling for a complete freeze on all "earmarks" and pork-barrel projects. While our challenge has largely fallen on deaf ears — House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, California Democrat, could shut down the earmark process tomorrow if she wanted to — our cause has a strong ally in Sen. John McCain.
Mr. McCain has been a leader in the quest to end pork-barrel spending and has led by example — the senator, like myself, doesn't request earmarks. He strongly supported a one-year moratorium on all earmarks in the U.S. Senate. And as president, Mr. McCain has promised that any "earmarked, pork-barrel bill that comes across my desk, I'll veto it."Mr. McCain's opposition to wasteful spending is a breath of fresh air to taxpayers who foot the bill for congressional spending sprees.
Americans aren't interested in paying for teapot museums, peanut storage and "monuments to me," where congressmen name buildings and other projects after themselves. And with families feeling the pinch of high gas prices and skyrocketing health care costs, they're certainly not interested in tax increases. Not surprisingly, Mr. McCain's Democratic opponents have quite a different record on spending.
In 2007 alone, Sen. Hillary Clinton, New York Democrat, earmarked $340 million in taxpayer dollars. Sen. Barack Obama, Illinois Democrat, earmarked more than $91 million. As recently as last week, both campaigns refused to disclose their full list of earmark requests.The pressure finally got to Mr. Obama, who released his 2005-06 earmark requests on March 13. His requests include $1 million for a hospital where his wife served as vice president of community and external affairs. (Where his wife also go a huge pay increase in the same year)
While Mrs. Clinton continues to decline demands that she make her requests public, one nonpartisan watchdog group says the senator landed 360 earmarks from 2002 to 2006. In 2007, Mrs. Clinton admitted to seeking funding for a hippie museum in Bethel, N.Y. Her spokesman has stated flatly that Mrs. Clinton is "very proud" of her earmarks, which cost taxpayers more than $2.2 billion.Both Mrs. Clinton and Mr. Obama received poor marks on the Club for Growth's 2007 report on pork-barrel spending and government waste. Mr. Obama received a score of 33 percent for his votes against anti-pork legislation, while Mrs. Clinton scored even worse: 11 percent.
Another group dedicated to protecting tax dollars, Citizens Against Government Waste, echoed the Club for Growth's poor rankings. They gave Mr. Obama a lifetime rating of 22 out of 100. Mrs. Clinton received a lifetime rating of 10 out of 100. In other words, taxpayers beware.Last week, Mrs. Clinton and Mr. Obama both voted for the Democrats' $3 trillion budget that included the largest tax increase in American history. According to the Associated Press, the budget would raise income taxes "on individuals making as little as $31,850 and couples earning $63,700" to pay for more wasteful spending.
In fairness, Mrs. Clinton and Mr. Obama followed Mr. McCain — and other fiscal conservatives — and signed on as "11th hour cosponsors" of his proposed earmark moratorium.I know what you're thinking: Why would two Democrat senators — who have fed at the trough as much as anyone — suddenly support a one-year ban on all pork? Simple: They understand that taxpayers oppose pork-barrel spending, and they'll say anything to get elected.Americans aren't going to buy it. They know that Washington spending is out of control and dramatic change is needed to fix it.As the year goes on, voters will find out who is really serious about fixing Washington and reforming how taxpayer dollars are spent. Consider that one party is calling for a complete freeze on wasteful pet projects and for a balanced budget that doesn't raise taxes, while the other is raising taxes and refuses to curb wasteful spending.Which really represents an attempt to fix Washington? Which represents the status quo?
I think the answer is clear.House Republicans recognize that the failure to control spending helped cost our party the majority. We've learned our lesson, and our nominee for president is the one with the record and the commitment to working with us to eliminatewasteful Washington spending once and for all.The election-year posturing of Mrs. Clinton and Mr. Obama is another example of why neither candidate is fit to be president.
Come November, voters are sure to embrace John McCain's positive vision of freedom, security and an end to wasteful spending.
House Republican Leader John Boehner represents Ohio.
I'm trying to get Military & Veterans to sign up at: http://Vets4McCain.com
Please help me pass the word and provide links to my site. In 2004 I was able to rally 80,000 vets to actually sign up and comment. Bumper Stickers are also available for the asking.
O. P. DitchCol USAF (ret)
Friday, March 14, 2008
March is a memorable time for the Americans who were released from captivity in North Vietnam during the month back in 1973. The pathway to freedom began in February, as the war in Vietnam was concluding for America.
John McCain, one of those American heroes, returned to freedom on March 15th, 1973, released from Hanoi that day along with other very happy American Prisoners of War. His journey home was the continuation of a remarkable story with chapters yet to be written. Having survived life-threatening and disabling injuries, along with the brutality of the POW experience, John had steadfastly resisted communist efforts to exploit him and his fellow POWs. John's homecoming began a new phase of his life. His courageous service and his political career are well known today, and now he is the presumptive nominee for the Republican Party to be the next President of the United States.
We are but representatives of over eighty former POWs who shared those heady days of freedom and those years of captivity and suffering with John McCain. Collectively, we are proudly doing all we can to help our dear friend, John McCain, become our next commander in chief. We are campaigning with him, helping him raise money, speaking on his behalf and, in constant conversations, promoting his candidacy among our friends and family all over the country.
We are doing so because we believe in John McCain.
Our convictions about John's character were born in the crucible of adversity. We have witnessed his courage, integrity, character and intellect. We know and respect his sense of honor and his tenacity in the face of grave danger and prolonged hardship. These qualities, combined with his life experiences, make John ready for the enormous challenges facing the leader of our country. No one -- no one -- is more qualified to be president, to lead our country, to protect our nation and our children and grandchildren. We know him. We know his strengths, his love of country and his commitment to serve it. He has been severely tested, and we have witnessed him under pressure. We trust his judgment and his ability to lead our country in these difficult times.
We are joined in that trust by over 130 retired Flag and General officers who are members of Senator McCain's Military Advisory Council. They know and have worked with John McCain over the past three decades dealing with major national security challenges. They know leadership and they know danger and challenges. They know experience. They know quality. And they chose John McCain for president.
Please join us in this effort by click here to watch a video to remember this memorable day in John McCain's life.
We must elect a leader who is ready on day one for these difficult and dangerous times. We need a leader who will insist that we win in the struggle against radical Islam. John is committed to let our troops win! We need a leader who will take on the big problems that most politicians seek to avoid. Leaders take on the tough issues. John McCain is that sort of leader. He knows the American spirit -- he has lived it like no other candidate. He knows we can do better and that America's best days are ahead.
Commander Everett Alvarez, USN (Ret.)
POW for 8 1/2 years
Colonel Bud Day, USAF (Ret.)Medal of Honor
POW Over 5 Years
Rear Admiral Robert Shumaker, USN (Ret.)
POW for 8 years
Colonel Leo Thorsness, USAF (Ret.)Medal of Honor
POW for 6 years
Commander Paul Galanti, USN (Ret.)
POW for over 6 1/2 Years
Captain Mike Cronin, USN (Ret.)
POW for over 6 years
Major General John Borling, USAF (Ret.)
POW for over 6 1/2 years
Captain Richard Stratton, USN (Ret.)
POW for over 6 years
Lt Colonel Orson Swindle, USMC (Ret.)
POW for over 6 years.
Wednesday, March 12, 2008
Go to True Information from Iraq for the rest of the charts and graphs
Monday, March 10, 2008
March 10, 2008
WASHINGTON -- The congressional Republican establishment's charade, pretending to crack down on spending earmarks while actually preserving their uncontrolled addiction to pork, faces embarrassment this week when the Democratic-designed budget is brought to the Senate floor. The party's presidential nominee-presumptive, Sen. John McCain, is an uncompromising pork buster with no use for the evasions by Republican addicts on Capitol Hill.
Sen. Jim DeMint, a first-term reform Republican from South Carolina, will propose a no-loopholes one-year moratorium on earmarks as a budget amendment. McCain has announced his support for the DeMint amendment and will co-sponsor it. DeMint wants to coordinate McCain's visits from the campaign trail to the Senate floor so the candidate can be there to speak for and vote for the moratorium.
The irony could hardly be greater. Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell, an ardent earmarker, is smart enough politically to realize how unpopular the practice is with the Republican base. Consequently, McConnell combines anti-earmark rhetoric with evasive tactics to save pork. But McCain, surely not the presidential candidate that McConnell wanted, is leading his party with a pledge to veto any bill containing earmarks. McConnell is running for re-election from Kentucky bragging about the pork he has brought the state.
McConnell has appointed a "task force" of five Republican senators to study earmarks, headed by the universally respected Richard Lugar of Indiana. But Lugar never has shown much interest in the subject. The dominant member is Thad Cochran of Mississippi, ranking Republican on the Appropriations Committee and the Senate's reigning king of pork. Cochran, who not long ago called McCain unfit to be president, secured $774 million in earmarks this year. Add earmarks of three other task-force members -- Lugar, Johnny Isakson of Georgia and Mike Crapo of Idaho -- and the task force accounts for more than $1.1 billion in pork.
The fifth task-force member is Tom Coburn of Oklahoma, DeMint's partner in pork-fighting and McCain's supporter for the presidential nomination. How could Cochran and Coburn agree on earmarks? The answer is that they cannot agree. "Everyone knows," a Senate reformer told me, "Cochran will never allow his right to earmark to be diminished." Since McConnell insists on "consensus" without a majority or minority report, all that will come out of the task force is a call for "transparency."
Lawyer-like, Republican leaders are demanding the definition of an earmark. They could get a good idea by looking at just a sample of current earmarks secured by task force members. Cochran: $475,000 for beaver management in Mississippi. Lugar: $240,000 to rehabilitate the Alhambra Theater in Evansville, Ind. Isakson: $300,000 for Old Fort Jackson in Savannah, Ga. Crapo: $250,000 for the Idaho sage grouse.
House Republican evasions are subtler. Rep. Jack Kingston of Georgia, a staunch defender of earmarking, has proposed a statutory "earmark reform commission," with a maximum six-month life, during which Republicans would refrain from earmarking. But that will allow them to be back at the pork barrel before the year ends.
House Republican Leader John Boehner, who unlike McConnell does not earmark and criticizes the practice, flinched from making a bold move as this year's session of Congress began. He could have led the House Republican Conference to endorse a yearlong moratorium and name reformer Jeff Flake of Arizona to a vacancy on the Appropriations Committee.
Instead, the Republicans picked Jo Bonner of Alabama, who spent 18 years as a House staffer before his election in 2002. Bonner has voted against Flake in 49 out of 50 attempts to kill earmarks. He has promised his Mobile-area constituents they would get "fair value" for their tax dollar -- the justification for bringing home the bacon from Washington. Incredibly, Boehner hailed Bonner's selection as a step toward earmark reform.
The GOP may be falling behind the Democrats, with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi moving toward a moratorium. In the Senate, courageous freshman Democrat Claire McCaskill of Missouri supports the DeMint amendment. She could be joined by her choice for president, Barack Obama. These developments encouraged Flake to say: "If Democrats actually move ahead with an earmark moratorium before Republicans, the Democrats will get the credit for eliminating earmarks, and, frankly, they'll deserve it."
Go Mac Go, Show your errant GOP brothers and sisters the way. Time to Lead.
Friday, March 7, 2008
Taken from JohnMcCain.com the following is the Senator’s position on gun control and the Second Ammendment…
John McCain believes that the right of law abiding citizens to keep and bear arms is a fundamental, individual Constitutional right that we have a sacred duty to protect. We have a responsibility to ensure that criminals who violate the law are prosecuted to the fullest, rather than restricting the rights of law abiding citizens. Gun control is a proven failure in fighting crime. Law abiding citizens should not be asked to give up their rights because of criminals - criminals who ignore gun control laws anyway.
Gun Manufacturer Liability
John McCain opposes backdoor attempts to restrict Second Amendment rights by holding gun manufacturers liable for crimes committed by third parties using a firearm, and has voted to protect gun manufacturers from such inappropriate liability aimed at bankrupting the entire gun industry.
John McCain opposes restrictions on so-called “assault rifles” and voted consistently against such bans. Most recently he opposed an amendment to extend a ban on 19 specific firearms, and others with similar characteristics.
Importation of High Capacity Magazines
John McCain opposes bans on the importation of certain types of ammunition magazines and has voted against such limitations.
John McCain believes that every firearms owner has a responsibility to learn how to safely use and store the firearm they have chosen, whether for target shooting, hunting, or personal protection. He has supported legislation requiring gun manufacturers to include gun safety devices such as trigger locks in product packaging.
John McCain believes that banning ammunition is just another way to undermine Second Amendment rights. He voted against an amendment that would have banned many of the most commonly used hunting cartridges on the spurious grounds that they were “armor-piercing.”
DC Personal Protection
As part of John McCain’s defense of Second Amendment rights, he cosponsored legislation to lift a ban on the law abiding citizens of the District of Columbia from exercising their Constitutional right to bear arms.
Criminal Background Checks
John McCain supports instant criminal background checks to help prohibit criminals from buying firearms and has voted to ensure they are conducted thoroughly, efficiently, and without infringing on the rights of law abiding citizens.
Background Checks at Gun Shows
At a time when some were trying to shut down gun shows in the name of fighting crime, John McCain tried to preserve gun shows by standardizing sales procedures. Federal law requires licensed firearm sellers at gun shows to do an instant criminal background check on purchasers while private firearm sellers at gun shows do not have to conduct such a check. John McCain introduced legislation that would require an instant criminal background check for all sales at gun shows and believes that such checks must be conducted quickly to ensure that unnecessary delays do not effectively block transactions.
The Firearm Purchase Waiting Period
John McCain has opposed “waiting periods” for law abiding citizen’s purchase of firearms.
The confiscation of firearms after an emergency
John McCain opposes the confiscation of firearms from private citizens, particularly during times of crisis or emergency. He voted in favor of an amendment sponsored by Senator David Vitter prohibiting such confiscation.
Stiffer Penalties for Criminals who use a Firearm in the Commission of a Crime
John McCain believes in strict, mandatory penalties for criminals who use a firearm in the commission of a crime or illegally possess a firearm. Enforcing the current laws on the books is the best way to deter crime.
Sounds like a conservative to me, heck he's more conservative than me on a couple of these issues.
Wednesday, March 5, 2008
Here are the links to each group. These groups are NOT associated directly with the John McCain campaign and are run by the McCainVictory08 Team:Alabamians For McCain
Alaskans for McCain
Arizonan’s For McCain!
Arkansas For McCain
Californians For McCain
Colorado For McCain
Connecticut For McCain
DC for McCain
Delaware For McCain
Florida for McCain
Georgia For McCain
Hawaii For McCain!
Idaho for McCain
Illinois For McCain!
Indiana For McCain
Iowa For McCain!
Kansas For McCain!
Kentucky For McCain
Louisiana For McCain
Maine For John McCain
Maryland For McCain
Massachusetts For McCain
Michigan For McCain
Minnesota For McCain!
Mississippi For McCain
Missouri For McCain!
Montana For McCain!
Nebraska For McCain!
Nevadan’s For McCain
New Hampshire For McCain
New Jersey For McCain
New Mexican’s For McCain
New York For McCain
North Carolina For McCain!
North Dakota For McCain!
Ohio For McCain
Oklahoma For McCain!
Oregon For McCain!
Pennsylvania For McCain
Rhode Island For McCain
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Join Today and get involved in the process of electing our next President ... American Hero John Mccain
Tuesday, March 4, 2008
Thank you. Thank you, Texas, Ohio, Vermont and Rhode Island. I am very grateful for the broad support you have given our campaign. And I am very pleased to note that tonight, my friends, we have won enough delegates to claim with confidence, humility and a sense of great responsibility that I will be the Republican nominee for President of the United States.
I want to thank all of you here and all the Republicans, Independents, and independent thinking Democrats, in all parts of this great country, who supported our campaign for the nomination, and have brought us across the finish line first, an accomplishment that once seemed to more than a few doubters unlikely.
I want to commend again, my friend, Governor Mike Huckabee, and his supporters, for their passionate commitment to their campaign that Governor Huckabee so ably represented. And I want to thank all my former rivals for the nomination and their supporters for their steadfast dedication to keeping America free, safe, prosperous, and proud.
And, of course, I want to thank my family: my wife, Cindy; my children, and our dear friends who have been throughout this campaign, and will remain in the challenging months ahead, an unwavering source of support and love.
Now, we begin the most important part of our campaign: to make a respectful, determined and convincing case to the American people that our campaign and my election as President, given the alternatives presented by our friends in the other party, are in the best interests of the country we love. I have never believed I was destined be President. I don’t believe anyone is pre-destined to lead America. But I do believe we are born with responsibilities to the country that has protected our God-given rights, and the opportunities they afford us. I did not grow up with the expectation that my country owed me more than the rights owed every American. On the contrary, I owe my country every opportunity I have ever had. I owe her the meaning that service to America has given my life, and the sense that I am part of something greater than myself, part of a kinship of ideals that have always represented the last, best hope of mankin d.
I understand the responsibilities I incur with this nomination, and I give you my word, I will not evade or slight a single one. Our campaign must be, and will be more than another tired debate of false promises, empty sound-bites, or useless arguments from the past that address not a single American’s concerns for their family’s security. Presidential candidates are judged on their records, their character and the whole of their life experiences. But we are also expected to concentrate our efforts on the challenges that will confront America on our watch and explain how we intend to address them.
America is at war in two countries, and involved in a long and difficult fight with violent extremists who despise us, our values and modernity itself. It is of little use to Americans for their candidates to avoid the many complex challenges of these struggles by re-litigating decisions of the past. I will defend the decision to destroy Saddam Hussein’s regime as I criticized the failed tactics that were employed for too long to establish the conditions that will allow us to leave that country with our country’s interests secure and our honor intact. But Americans know that the next President doesn’t get to re-make that decision. We are in Iraq and our most vital security interests are clearly involved there. The next President must explain how he or she intends to bring that war to the swiftest possible conclusion without exacerbating a sectarian conflict that could quickly descend into genocide; destabilizing the entire Middle East; enabling our adversaries in the region to extend their influence and undermine our security there; and emboldening terrorists to attack us elsewhere with weapons we dare not allow them to possess.
The next President must encourage the greater participation and cooperation of our allies in the fight against al Qaeda and the Taliban in Afghanistan.
The next President must lead an effort to restructure our military, our intelligence, our diplomacy and all relevant branches of government to combat Islamic extremism, encourage the vast majority of moderates to win the battle for the soul of Islam, and meet the many other rising challenges in this changing world.
I will leave it to my opponent to argue that we should abrogate trade treaties, and pretend the global economy will go away and Americans can secure our future by trading and investing only among ourselves. We will campaign in favor of seizing the opportunities presented by the growth of free markets throughout the world, helping displaced workers acquire new and lasting employment and educating our children to prepare them for the new economic realities by giving parents choices about their children’s education they do not have now.
I will leave it to my opponent to claim that they can keep companies and jobs from going overseas by making it harder for them to do business here at home. We will campaign to strengthen job growth in America by helping businesses become more competitive with lower taxes and less regulation.
I will leave it to my opponent to propose returning to the failed, big government mandates of the sixties and seventies to address problems such as the lack of health care insurance for some Americans. I will campaign to make health care more accessible to more Americans with reforms that will bring down costs in the health care industry down without ruining the quality of the world’s best medical care.
And I will campaign to reduce our dangerous dependence on foreign oil with an energy policy that encourages American industry and technology to make our country safer, cleaner and more prosperous by leading the world in the use, development and discovery of alternative sources of energy.
These are some of the challenges that confront us. There are others just as urgent, and during this campaign I’ll travel across the country in cities and rural areas, in communities of all ethnic backgrounds and income levels, offering my ideas and listening to the concerns and advice of Americans. Americans aren’t interested in an election where they are just talked to and not listened to; an election that offers platitudes instead of principles and insults instead of ideas; an election that results — no matter who wins — in four years of unkept promises and a government that is just a battleground for the next election. Their patience is at an end for politicians who value ambition over principle, and for partisanship that is less a contest of ideas than an uncivil brawl over the spoils of power.
Nothing is inevitable in America. We are the captains of our fate. We’re not a country that prefers nostalgia to optimism; a country that would rather go back than forward. We’re the world’s leader, and leaders don’t pine for the past and dread the future. We make the future better than the past. We don’t hide from history. We make history. That, my friends, is the essence of hope in America, hope built on courage, and faith in the values and principles that have made us great. I intend to make my stand on those principles and chart a course for our future greatness, and trust in the judgment of the people I have served all my life. So stand up with me, my friends, stand up and fight for America — for her strength, her ideals, and her future. The contest begins tonight. It will have its ups and downs. But we will fight every minute of every day to make certain we have a government that is as capable, wise, brave and decent as the great people we serve. That is our responsibility and I will not let you down.
John McCain on Winning the GOP Nomination for President in 2008
ABC News' John Berman and Jennifer Duck Report: Senator John McCain, R-Ariz., who clinched the Republican nomination with clean sweep of wins in Texas, Ohio, Rhode Island, and Vermont on Tuesday, will visit the White House on Wednesday.
There, according to sources close to the McCain, the Republican Senator will receive the endorsement of President George W. Bush.Bush and McCain -- rivals in an often bitter 2000 presidential campaign -- will have lunch together and then make a joint statement at 1pm ET, according to a senior administration official.According to a count by the Associated Press, McCain has reached 1,191 delegates, the magic number to secure the Republican nomination.
McCain's most significant remaining rival -- former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee -- dropped out of the presidential race on Tuesday night.
Monday, March 3, 2008
I was surfing around twitter, Conservatweet posted a link to Hot Air article Republicans rejoice: Hillary claims “momentum” where the obvious thrust of the post was that Republicans are crossing over and voting for Hillary in Texas and Ohio. Her recent, the last week, momentum may very well be turning the tide at just the right time for Come Back Clinton Part 4.
But I found even more enlightening a comment, suggesting that Hillary supporters would prefer McCain over Obama too.
For another, Obamas people hate clinton people. I was at Hillary rally
today…and it seems like Hillary supporters aren’t very fond of Obama either. I
heard one person say they would vote for McCain before Obama because of
terryannonline on March 3, 2008
"I know the very day that I became a McCain supporter. It was a week or two
before Supertuesday, and he said that if it were up to Democrats, either Saddaam
would still be in power, or Al Qaeda would have beaten us on the battlefield in
Iraq and would have a huge propaganda victory there, as well as control of the
Sunday, March 2, 2008
http://reasonbellpundit.blogspot.com (Porter County Indiana McCain Info)