Tag Archive: 2012 Campaign


The first debate is over, and the 2016 Republican Nomination race is in full swing.

Donald Trump, is leading in the polls, although latest reports have his lead shrinking, and his popularity declining, and some other candidates are moving up, notably, including Carly Fiorina, Jeb Bush, Ted Cruz, and Ben Carson.

The one characteristic about this race, so far, is the seething anger, much of it from Trump supporters.  Now, I have to sympathize here momentarily.  I understand their anger.  Mainly, they are angry, not so much at the current administration, but more so at the current Republican leadership in Congress who were elected on big promises, but, once in office, failed to deliver on them, and caved to the Democrats at almost every opportunity.  In fact, I will gladly state, that I am angry right along with them.  To say I am pissed off at the current state of affairs in Washington is a bit of an understatement.

Anger aside, however, the viciousness with which Trump supporters attack their opponents, is, I think, a bit overwrought.  Yeah, fine, he’s your candidate, but he’s not the Magic Man, and he certainly isn’t this nation’s savior.  Trump critics everywhere meet criticisma like this with expletive ridden, factless bombast anytime anyone comes out against The Donald.   Over at Red State.com, Erick Erickson, who runs that site, dis-invited Trump from Red State Gathering 2015, that took place in Atlanta back on August 6th-9th.  He caught much in the way of the above described vitriol.  He describes some of it in this post here.  He also admits that his dis-invitation of Ben Carson was a mistake.  (I get the Trump dis-invite, but not the Ben Carson one, but he explains it, and admits he is wrong, so that’s good enough for me)  The contrast between those who disagreed with his Trump snub, vs, those who disagreed with the Ben Carson snub is, as he stated, “…..and the reaction about Trump was 80% expletive filled rage.” . There is passionate disagreement, I know, I can be that way, when it comes to things I am passionate about.  But, blind, anger filled rage, aimed at someone just because they disagree with, or don’t like someone that you put on a pedestal, serves no purpose, and actually does little to advance an argument.

I may be among the angry, but I am not among the Trump supporters.  Several reasons. First of all, he has no solutions.  He has soundbites and slogans.  Second of all, he is not a conservative in any way, shape or form, and was never a Republican.  In fact, it is documented that he was a donor to Hillary’s senate campaign.  He is here to play spoiler, and that is about it.  Furthermore, I am thinking this is a bit of dust up as well, and as the dust settles, so will Trump’s poll numbers. Additionally, his appeal comes from the fact that he is talking about sticking a thumb in the eye of the political establishment in Washington, and right now, that is what many voters want to hear, and are rallying around the guy whose thumb is extended, and is just looking for a target.

But, what about all of those angry voters?  Well, they are there, and they are, for the moment, rather vocal about it and don’t care who knows.  But, what is driving the anger?  For starters, it is the fact that many are tired of the Republicans saying one thing, and doing another.  They are tired of a President who seems more concerned with golf, celebrities and vacations, than the serious business of running the country. Many are tired of what appear to be threats to their rights, and their way of life  As I have said before, these political times are like nothing I have experienced in the 35 years or so, since I was old enough to understand the political process.  What will happen to the anger?  Well, that remains to be seen.  Anger can only sustain a candidate, and their base of supporters for so long.  Clear, well thought out statements on their plans should they get elected need to be forth coming.  Because when everyone is done shaking their fists, the angry voters are going to start thinking, and then they are going to have serious questions for not only “their” candidate, but all of them.  The candidates that are going to rise to the top, are the ones that are going to have clearly articulated goals, as well as be brave enough to take on the establishment, both within in the party, and within the opposition.  Once that candidate comes to the fore, then the voters will find common ground.  However, that candidate is going to need to be strong, as well as clear, articulate as well as “angry”, and will have the American people’s back.  All of us. Because right now, across many segments of our society, people feel betrayed by Washington, their party, and their politicians.

“Gaffe”  A word heard quite often, especially during a Presidential campaign. Sometimes, after long days and weeks on the road, candidates say something silly.  Other times, their true colors are revealed, and then sometimes, they speak, and say something that manages to make people angry, and make headlines.

Example: Todd Akin.

Todd Akin was asked, during an interview with KTVI-TV,  about “abortion in the case of rape or incest” and he said:

“It seems to me, from what I understand from doctors, that’s really rare,” Mr. Akin said of pregnancies from rape. “If it’s a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down. But let’s assume that maybe that didn’t work or something: I think there should be some punishment, but the punishment ought to be of the rapist, and not attacking the child.”

“legitimate rape” are the two words that will go down as the words that potentially doomed, but definitely derailed, a campaign.  I have no idea where he got the whole “has a way to shut that down” idiocy from.  I can understand a gaffe, but, this wasn’t a gaffe. Akin’s remarks smack as uninformed, and uneducated.  Precisely how the left views most pro-life conservatives, and his remark played right into their hands.

Now, we are dealing with a totally derailed GOP message.  We have gone from “Jobs, Economy, Energy” to “Abortion and rape”.  This fits in the Left’s “War on Women” meme (I hate that word) that they have been pushing for the last few months.  Even Sandra Fluke is getting mileage out of this, and is coordinating with Barack Obama on an email that will continue to lump all of us Conservatives, and Republicans into the same box, under the “War on Women” meme (again, I hate that word)

Right now, we have lost the message.  The Romney campaign dodged this whole mess by condemning Akin’s remarks. If they hadn’t, or had remained silent for more than 10 minutes on it, the media would be spinning Romney into this.  Not that they haven’t tried, but, had Romney’s campaign remained silent, the media spin would have been more damaging. By condemning the remarks, Romney did put some distance between his campaign and Todd Akin’s stupidity.

However, that isn’t going to last very long. The longer Akin is in the race, the more likely it is that it will do damage (how much, remains to be seen) to the Romney campaign. Right now, the focus is off of the real issues, and on to this stupid sideshow.  It’s where the Obama campaign wants the focus, and actually needs the focus to be. They need it off of Medicare, Obamacare, jobs, unemployment, gas prices, energy in general, national security, and any other actual issue that he has a poor record on.  Right now, Romney and Ryan are still out there spreading their message, in an effort to keep the focus where it needs to be.  That can’t last if this Akin business persists. Eventually they are going to have to answer to it as well, even though their condemnation of his remarks have pretty much made it clear.  The Left is trying to tie this into Paul Ryan as well, and the more it stays out there, the more likely it is.

The other part of this is the usual “If a Democrat had said this he would have gotten a pass”.  Yes, a Democrat would have.  Get over it.  We need to stop complaining about the “unfairness” in media reporting.  it’s deliberate.  We know that.  Now stop.   We are never, ever, ever, ever, ever going to get a fair shot from the media. Ever.  Stop complaining.  Right now, we have a problem.  We have a candidate who failed us. Something needs to be done. Right now, this idiot, and his remarks are taking up news cycle after news cycle, and drowning out the real message that Romney/Ryan are trying to get out there.

I am not saying that our chances of winning in November are ruined.  What I am saying, is the longer this plays, the more the focus is taken off of the real issues.  We can’t have that.  This country cannot afford it.  We can not have the terms “legitimate rape” be the defining terms of this presidential election, not when so much is at stake. We need to define the terms of this election, we cannot let the Left define them for us.  However, when a remark such as Akin’s is made, we have lost the battle for definition, and are on the defensive….Again.

Todd Akin has to go.

From everything I have read, he doesn’t want to.  A PPP Poll released yesterday shows him up over Claire McCaskill by 1 point.  It was a poll that had a Republican sample that was 9% larger, and thereby seems to have skewed the results, in an effort, it would seem, to convince Akin he still has a chance.  He ruined his chances with a remark that was woefully uninformed and, ignorant.

Todd Akin needs to be convinced that the best thing for him to do is to get out of the race.  However, the public spectacle that would ensue if he doesn’t get out, and the GOP, or someone, sues to have him removed, would also serve to damage our efforts.  Trying to run a 3rd candidate would only guarantee MacCaskill gets another term.  It’s not a good situation, and the best thing for him to do, is to decide to get out, and let the damage get repaired.  His selfish intrasigence will only serve to make matters worse.

“Watch your mouth”

Words that my father and mother always used to speak (or shout) when one of us kids’ vocabulary wandered into “off color” territory.

Those words should also apply to political candidates.

Todd Akin should have, this past weekend, at least ordered his thoughts before speaking.  His remarks were out of line, and completely ill-informed.  When one wishes to speak on a subject, one should had least have some knowledge of that subject.

Unfortunately, knowledge escaped Mr. Akin.

Once remarks like his hit the airwaves, no explanation, no matter how reasonable, or, truthful, is going to bring those words back, nor change the interpreted meaning.  Note that I said “interpreted meaning”. In many cases, especially things said during a political campaign, people hear what they want, as opposed to what is being said.  Akin’s remarks just fed into the “war on women” narrative, being waged by Left. However, in his case, his remarks needed little interpretation.

What Mr. Akin should have said, in response to that reporter’s question was: “I am pro-life. Next question please”, or, “That’s a decision between a woman and her doctor, abortion in the case of rape, incest should be on a case by case basis”  The first response would have put the the Left in to it’s usual response mode, decrying all Republicans as “anti-woman” and etc.  But, at least the answer would have been un-ambiguous, and pretty much benign, and therefore, of limited value to the pro abortion crowd.  The second response would have gotten a negative reaction from many pro-lifers, but, since it is such a touchy issue, the response would have been muddled at best, and not approaching “outrage” levels.

Unfortunately, Mr. Akin did neither.  He said something, that in his mind probably sounded reasonable and well thought out. After he spoke, it sounded so off key, and out of line, it couldn’t help but garner the reaction that it did.

So, now, amid calls for Mr. Akin to step down, this campaign has now become about abortion, and women’s rights. Mr. Akin has just handed the Democrats something to run with, something they will use to overshadow the economic issues that are the most important thing going on right now.

“See, Republicans HATE women.”

I can hear it now. There is nothing like using a moral/social issue to trump the economic ones that Romney has been beating up Barack Obama with over the last week. Especially one that inflames passions on both sides.  The Romney campaign, in a move that absolutely reeked of wisdom, condemned Mr. Akin’s remarks, and moved on, thereby distancing themselves from the problem.  For if Romeny were to embroil his campaign in this Missouri Mis-step(right into it) it would have completely taken the focus off of the major issues, and focused it completely on a sideshow.  The Obama campaign, however, would love the focus to stay right there, because it plays into their hands, and they can get a ton of mileage out of this and the “war on women”.  They can use it to steer the narrative, and keep it, (and voter’s minds) off the economic, energy, and employment issues that are really the central issues.  Not only that, it gives every floundering Democrat a lifeline to grab on to.

Mr. Akin, please step down.

Seriously. It’s time to go.  We need the focus off of you, and on the economy.  You are not showing “courage and determination” by staying in the race, you are showing that you don’t get what you said, and how much damage it has done.

In a sane world, explaining what you really meant, along with an apology probably would have cleared things up for some people However, this is not a sane world. This is politics.

A presidential election year, no less.

Something like this has consequences, especially when the stakes are this high.

Sorry, Mr. Akin, but, really, it’s time to go.