May 25, 2007

A Couple of Morning-After Thoughts

Justin Katz

Upon reflection, I was unfairly dismissive of Mayor Laffey's comments with respect to Giuliani. Rudy did wonderful things in NYC long before 9/11 made his a household name, but when it comes to the presidency, the social issues are a dealbreaker for me. A Republican president like Giuliani would be disastrous for the culture that makes the United States worth defending.

On the note of defense, a word about Hugh Cort. Inasmuch as his speech and conversation hammered on terrorism, somewhat to the chagrin of his campaign manager, I suspect that his desire is more to increase the profile of that issue than to promote himself, and for that I applaud him. His related Web site Stop Doomsday is certainly worth a look.

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Giuliani is a self-proclaimed "moderate Republican". He did a great job as mayor, but if he becomes the GOP nominee, he will make the party's national platform far more liberal.

Giuliani not only supports abortion, he supports taxpayer funded abortion. One of his ex-wives was a regular contributor to Planned Parenthood.

Giuliani not only supports gun control, he supports class action lawsuits holding gun manufacturers legally and financially liable for gun-related deaths.

He has already indicated that he would appoint Supreme Court justices that would be "acceptable" to most members of the Senate (can you say pro-abortion?).

I do find irony in the fact that some of the same people who criticized Chafee are now supporting the most liberal Republican ever to run for the presidency.

Chafee couldn't come close to dictating the course of the national GOP's agenda. As the party's presidential nominee, Giuliani would be in a position to do just that.

So much for putting principles over personal advancement.

Posted by: Anthony at May 25, 2007 9:43 AM

If the GOP is serious about keeping the White House, Guiliani, for all his faults, is the strongest candidate it can offer (provided he doesn't self-destruct). I'd bet on Romney as the likely nominee, but he will be hoisted in a general election on the same flip-flopping petard Kerry was. McCain's wasted practically all his independent/moderate cred and won't pull the substantial Democratic vote he could've in 2000.

Posted by: Rhody at May 25, 2007 11:04 AM

From a more pragmatic standpoint, if we don't take the correct stance on the spread of Islamofascism, we won't have the luxury of worrying about abortion, gay marriage, etc.

Anthony, your comments about what someone liked in a Senator vs. what they like in a President are sophomoric.
It's like saying since you never liked Randy Moss, how can you still be a Patriot fan now that he'll be playing for them. Just dumb.

I do not care for Rudy's stand on gun control or abortion. But what he did in New York, and what I believe he will do to fight Islamofascism far outweigh those issues I don't favor in him.

Those angling for everything in a candidate usually end up with nothing.

Posted by: Jim at May 25, 2007 11:34 AM

"So much for putting principles over personal advancement."

And just what was the rationale for the RNC support of Chafee??


Posted by: jbharris at May 25, 2007 3:08 PM

The stance regarding Islamofascism is legitmate, but not exclusively so.

If Guiliani ends up being the "Republican" candidate, I'm sitting out the Presidential race.

Ditto if it's McCain.

Most likely ditto if it's Romney (I don't trust him, but would like to think that his Mormon faith would make him more conservative than he appears to be).

While fighting terrorism is perhaps THE first priority, I can just picture that political strategists are counting on conservatives to succumb to voting for a "moderate" (a/k/a liberal) because of that.

I'm declining to play on their terms.

After all, that's what we did with George W, and he's been a disaster for the Republican Party.

Given the liberal / big government / amnesty for illegals direction that has been adopted by this "Republican" President (why oh why didn't we learn our lesson after his father?), and the "Republicans" in Congress, I'm not going to play the "yeah, our guy will keep stabbing you in the back, but the Democrat will stab you in the stomach too, so you have to vote for our guy anyway because of terrorism" game.

I'd rather lose remaining principled than sell out by voting for (another big government) liberal to lead the "Republican team."

I'm praying that Fred Thompson will run ...

Posted by: Tom W at May 25, 2007 6:10 PM

The head to head general election polls pitting the two leading Republicans--(Giuliani/McCain)against the two leading Democrats) Clinton/Obama--are virtually identical.

In fact, McCain matches up better against Obama than Giuliani does. The polls don't show that Giuliani would have any stronger chance of keeping the White House in GOP hands than John McCain has. Thompson hasn't even entered the race, yet some polls show him in a tight race with Giuliani should he run.

Jim, I don't think the other Republican candidates are exactly supportive of "Islamofascism" nor do I think Giuliani has a monopoly on a strong anti-terrorism position. I've looked at his formal positions on both Iraq and the War on Terror. His positions are the same as several of the other GOP candidates. Giuliani reacted well after 9/11, but I think McCain has far greater grasp of foreign affairs and terrorism issues.

jb, I don't know how many times I've said this, but the reason that the RNC supported Chafee was because it needed Chafee to keep the GOP majority. Remember when Bill Frist was majority leader? Remember when the tax cuts look like they'd be extended rather than expire? Remember when Bush could get guys like Roberts and Alito on the Supreme Court? That was because the GOP had Lincoln Chafee to give them the majority. It was about staying true to Republican principles.

Posted by: Anthony at May 25, 2007 6:54 PM

I have to admit to a considerable amount of agonizing over my "choices," especially considering that I am planning to again run as a RNC Convention delegate. From what I've been told, running as an "uncommitted" delegate is not a recipe for success.

On a personal level, I like Rudy. I've been very impressed, not just with his post-9/11 leadership, but with his consistent stands regarding the threat of Islamofascism. However, his stands on social issues are of tremendous concern to me. The only way I could really see myself openly supporting him post-convention would be if he were to choose a very conservative Southern or Western VP. We'd need something akin to Cheney on steroids, e.g. Gov. Huckabee or Fred Thompson or someone even more conservative (is Attila the Hun available?). I would also need an iron-clad promise from him regarding his potential judicial appointments. All things being equal, he would probably make for a better vice-presidential pick for a conservative presidential nominee.

Sen. McCain has been losing support in the GOP, not gaining it. I've long been impressed with his military record. I like that he's been consistently pro-life. His previous stands on campaign finance "reform" have only made the issue of "soft money" far worse, by causing it to be channeled through numerous non-party 527's and the like. His recent public stand in favor of the Ted Kennedy illegal alien amnesty bill is almost certainly going to cost him any real shot at the nomination. I'm not even sure if he's going to make it to the convention. I think he might make for a good VP nominee or Secretary of Defense.

As for Romney, he has plenty of private-sector leadership experience. His record as MA governor was generally speaking, good. He seems like someone you could imagine as president. As I know more than a few, him being a Mormon is not a negative. That he has personal wealth, and a "built in" network of financially well-off and plenty of Mormon supporters should help him. My concerns are not about what he's been saying recently, because he's been on the ball (except for the "varmints" thing), but with some of his past statements. Some might describe him as somewhat "chameleon-esque" (or even, God forgive me, "Clinton-esque"). However, in politics, that type of tailoring (or pandering) tends to work.

If the GOP nominee is Rudy, McCain, or Romney, the only way I can see any of them having a real chance at winning, is with a much more conservative VP. I don't see any scenario under which "the base" would be comfortable with having any 2 of the 3 "Rudy McRomney" candidates as both the presidential and vice-presidential nominees. Don't think that they wouldn't stay home.

Posted by: Will at May 25, 2007 11:04 PM

Anthony, you are quite selective in your approbation of "principles."

"That was because the GOP had Lincoln Chafee to give them the majority. It was about staying true to Republican principles"

Using this logic of yours, all Republicans should be supporting Rudy, since he matches up the best against every Demcorat in the general, giving Republicans the best shot to keep the White House. No?

Posted by: Jim at May 26, 2007 7:26 AM

You apparently didn't read my previous posts or missed my point completely. I don't know how I can make myself more clear, but I'll try.

Lincoln Chafee's presence in the US Senate was crucial to promoting Republican principles: the appointment of non-activist Supreme Court justices, the extension of tax cuts, etc.

Time has proven that the best way to accomplish all of these things would have be to re-elect Chafee. Chafee lost and a Democrat majority is allowing the tax cuts to expire, threatening to cut off war funding, etc.

People such as yourself believe that the national GOP support of Chafee meant it was going to adopt all of Chafee's issue positions. Well, that wasn't ever going to happen.

But that is exactly what will happen if Giuliani become the party's nominee for the presidency.

As for pragmatism, in the Chafee/Laffey race every credible poll showed that only Chafee could win a general election. Laffey was getting beaten by 20-30 points in every general election match up and wasn't popular among independents. Laffey stood as much chance of winning as OJ Simpson stood of "finding Nicole's murderer"--nil. Everyone but a very small core group of Laffey supporters understood this fact.

I suppose you also would try to prevent Ralph Nader from running because he is was too liberal, even though he was responsible for causing Democrats to lose presidential elections.

Posted by: Anthony at May 26, 2007 2:17 PM

"Lincoln Chafee's presence in the US Senate was crucial to promoting Republican principles: the appointment of non-activist Supreme Court justices, the extension of tax cuts, etc. "

Clearly, you have a tremendous ability to block certain things from your mind. This latest post only supports my contention of your selective application of principles.
Did you forget that Chafee voted against Alito?
Did you forget that Chafee, and Chafee alone, stopped Bolton, a great man, from continuing to support US causes at the UN?
Me thinks your principles take the form of the amoeba.

You really have to get over the Chafee thing, Anthony, because you are not making a lot of sense.

Posted by: Jim at May 26, 2007 11:40 PM

Rudy seems to be the only one with a shot in November. I think he should announce a list of about a half dozen judges from which he will appoint to Supreme Court vacancies. This alone would give everyone on the Right all the reason they need to vote for him. Mike Huckaby and Sam Brownback (and Fred Thompson) aren't going to get to the finish line first in a November race.

Posted by: Mike at May 27, 2007 8:58 AM

No, you are the one who isn't not making alot of sense. It's Politics 101.

The only reason Alito was appointed to the Court was because the GOP held the Senate majority. Regardless of how Chafee personally voted on Alito, his presence in the Senate gave the GOP the majority that allowed Alito to be confirmed to the bench.

If Chafee had been re-elected, the Senate would still be in GOP hands and should the need arise for Bush to appoint a Court justice, he/she would likely have been appointed. Because Chafee was not re-elected, the Senate is in Democrat hands and you can be sure that any conservative nominee will be shot down.

So how do you best promote conservative principles?

My way--by electing a Repbulican majority that can pass legislation, keep the tax cuts in effect and confirm conservative nominess.

Or your way--by voting for a candidate that ensures a Democrat majority which has not renewed the tax cuts and will kill any conservative judidcial nominees.

If that's how you choose to go about "promoting" conservative principles, then liberals can only hope and pray for more "conservatives" such as yourself.

It's a good thing you're not a doctor. You'd no doubt amputate an arm to remove a finger blister.

Posted by: Anthony at May 27, 2007 11:32 PM

By the way, Jim, you still haven't outlined how Giuliani's position on Islamofascism is any different than any other GOP candidates position on the issue.

Posted by: Anthony at May 27, 2007 11:44 PM

And how about Bolton? (I'm dying to hear the principled rationale you concoct for this - hah!)

Anthony, will you please just give it up. Chafee represents the demise of the Republican party, not it's resurrection.

Posted by: Jim at May 28, 2007 11:36 AM

As most literate people can see, I outlined my response in my previous post.

I guess you have no real way to explain how your approach promotes Republican principles or have any way to defend your statements on Giuliani.


Posted by: Anthony at May 28, 2007 5:23 PM

No, Anthony, you've offered nonsense. Now what about the Bolton vote?

And, this pretty much sums up my thoughts on Rudy versus the others in the field:

What I've concluded from your comments Anthony, is that you are simply about politics, and not principle. And that is exactly why the Republican party of George Bush is failing versus the party of Reagan.

Posted by: Jim at May 29, 2007 10:19 PM

“It does not require a majority to prevail, but rather an irate, tireless minority keen to set brushfires in people’s minds.” – Sam Adams

You keep watch over your "tidy little apple cart" Anthony. We'll light the fires.

Posted by: Perry Ellis at May 30, 2007 4:13 PM