town hall meetings

well, the GOP nomination for NY 29 just got a lot more valuable

Not sure if I were holding a "right wing, Republican district" if I'd go outside my district and tell a bunch of left wing activists I'd "vote against my district" on single payer health care; especially if I were a freshman Democrat like Eric Massa.  

Apart from admitting the Town Halls are killing the move towards socialized medicine, this is nasty toxic  Hey, telling the truth on that point might get you support in the Southern Tier.

Hopefully, we will do better than running another Randy Kuhl, a careerist underachiever  with personal issues who couldn't exceed 51.5% in three tries in a district drawn to favor Republicans.


Let's do a national "Read-In" across the country

Brian Simpson on RedState suggested we take the Obama camp up on their offer to schedule meetings in congressional district office to talk health care.

But that's not enough 

The message from the Left is we are engaged in loud, mindless street theatre and we don't understand the complexities of the various bills.

Sorry. Yes we do.

In the 1960's the preferred tactic of civil disobedience was the "sit-in". A group of nonviolent protesters would sit in a location until they were removed to make a point.

Let's improve on that. We know the members of Congress regularly vote on bills they don't read. We'll help them out.

Let's pick a weekday before the end of the month and have every congressional office in the nation presented with a contingent of well spoken critics of socialized medicine armed with a copy of HR 3200 or the Dodd senate health care bill.  Demand to have the member join the group in a "read-in". If not the member, demand the district director.   Go through the bill line by line and highlight all the objectionable parts of the bill. Demand an explanation for why the member would ever vote for a bill containing these provisions.

That's the National Read-in

If no one joins you from the member's staff,  sit there and read the bill aloud to the receptionist.  And make sure the local TV knows you are doing this.

Are the members going to have a group of people looking solely to enlighten them removed forcibly from their office?  Are they going to play "Roger and Me" and duck their constituents? Are they going to call out muscle in purple shirts?

One message that resonates with moderates and independents is "Read the Bill". If the Pelosi Poodles won't do it themselves, we'll offer to do it for them.

Dunno, maybe the DNC will still find some way to call this evil.  But I do not how they do that without repudiating both the civil rights movement and the 1960's antiwar movement.  

Will "Middle American Radicals" back "Certified Pre-owned candidates" in 2010?

There's a must read over @ the New Ledger which I think makes a point missed by the Beltway brain trust.

Yet the assumption that these protesters are right-wingers — or as others have accused, fake grassroot anger, or “astroturf” — seems a vast oversimplification. While we hardly have data on the people who have been attending these townhalls and shouting down members attempting to sell health care insurance reform, anecdotal evidence indicates that this is hardly manufactured dissent. Obama’s plan is hardly popular, and many Americans who are not Republican or conservative are opposed to the package and nervous about its outcome.

Domenech makes the point that this appears much more to be a sudden resurgence of the Ross Perot phenomena than any Republican party inspired movement. I tend to agree. Recent polls show that Republican party identification is still rather low; it's been deterioration in Democratic support over recent months that's kept the gap from widening. To the extent any national figures have stoked the flames, they are media hosts like Limbaugh, Hannity , Beck and Levin and not Republican elected officials.  And the "feel" of the crowds doesn't reflect the losing late decade Republican coalition of preachers and lobbyists.

These protesters aren’t really fans of either party (George W. Bush is no more popular at Tea Parties than Barack Obama), but driven by a strong sense — and basic American ideas of liberty — that the government shouldn’t be intruding on their lives, taking their money and giving it to companies that don’t deserve it, telling them which doctor to go to, and generally mismanaging things.

Indeed, the only contemporary Republican political figure who seems to be aligned with this inchoate anti-establishment vibe is Sarah Palin, who as we are well aware marches to her own drummer.  While Palin is often pigeonholed by the MSM as a 'social conservative champion", much of the energy she brought to the McCain campaign during its brief burst of success was appealing to these sorts of voters who had tuned out the Republican establishment.

These voters are "middle American radicals"--distrustful of big government but usually skeptical of movement conservatism or corporate Republicanism.  I suspect that one will find a rather substantial number sat out the 2008 election, and clearly they decided to abstain from the 2006 midterms in droves, costing us both houses of Congress. 

So here's the challenge:

if those on the right aren’t able to present a strong, coherent alternative, they will be unable to rally these Perotistas to their side. In 1994, the Republicans were successful at this, combining a package of populist governmental reforms with outrage against irresponsible governance to attain victory — but more recently, they’ve given no signs of having this capability. Whether they can recapture it, and claim enough of the independent middle to win, will be a very challenging thing indeed.

And what are Republicans doing to harness this energy for the 2010 elections?  Nominating a bunch of "certified pre-owned candidates"

The latest example is from Colorado, where it appears failed 2006 gubernatorial candidate Bob Beauprez is about to challenge appointed Democratic senator Bennet. 

Beauprez appears to be a perfectly satisfactory guy; he won a swing House district twice and seems to have done a credible job in Congress.  But how much pizazz are we getting running a guy whose been around awhile and lost his last statewide race by double digitsMaybe the alternatives haven't shown to be able to get it done, but I'd like to think we'd do better than a "round up the usual suspects" approach to nominating candidates in this unconventional election cycle  

Same for Roy Blunt or Charlie Crist. Are we giving ourselves our best shot in 2010 by running old time corporate Republicans? And let's assume they do win. Are these the sorts of people that are going to inspire a new generation to become active Republicans?

Lemme throw a race where we should be thinking outside the box. Nevada. Harry Reid has anemic approval numbers but all the prominent Republican officeholders of late have legal problems or think they'll wait for John Ensign to step aside in 2012.

Fine. Why don't we look to a nonpolitician to run against Reid. Make this the classic outsider vs. the classic insider.

Half of Nevada's voters weren't around when Reid got into the Senate. Nevada is a state built on gambling, this seems like a good bet to me.

Or will we find the last political warhorse who lost a statewide race or hold some obscure legislative post and hand the keys off to him?

Stop looking for old jalopies. The Republican party is not going to thrive in the future running its own version of "cash for clunkers". Time for the bright new models!  


Chris Murphy meets "the mob" in Simsbury, CT

Help me out here. This guy is NOT wearing Brooks Brothers  

At Meet-And-Greet, Rep. Chris Murphy Meets Some Hostility

Passionate Crowd

SIMSBURY - Chanting "Dump Chris Dodd" and "No national health care," scores of angry constituents confronted U.S. Rep. Chris Murphy at a meet-and-greet outside the Super Stop & Shop Wednesday afternoon.Murphy, a Democrat who represents the 5th District, routinely holds informal office hours at supermarkets and strip malls, but such gatherings are generally uneventful. This time, many of the 150 or so attendees were so boisterous that Stop & Shop management called the police to ask that the crowd be moved from the store's entrance. 

Dunno, Chris: maybe if you hadn't voted to exempt yourself from the so-called "public option" health plan or vote to qualify illegal aliens for the program the crowd might have been a bit less peeved


Scott Murphy: Going covert over health care "reform"?

Remember in the spring. Barack Obama was popular and in the NY 20 special election Democrat Scott Murphy and his allies in the press were lambasting Republican Jim Tedisco for being both on the wrong side of the stimulus bill and insufficiently vocal in his opposition to the stimulus bill.

Shoe's on the other foot now.

Murphy holds small-biz roundtable on health care … yesterdayAugust 5, 2009 at 3:35 pm by Casey Seiler

When it comes to announcements of events hosted by congressmen, the past tense isn’t usually the first tense to be used. Politicians are much more likely to alert the public, or at least the media, to events before they happen. But this morning, we received a release headlined CONGRESSMAN MURPHY HOSTED SMALL BUSINESS ROUNDTABLE TO DISCUSS HEALTH CARE REFORM — as opposed to TO HOST or HOSTS.

Since health care is a fairly red-hot topic this summer, we were kind of disappointed to have missed out on Tuesday’s Ballston Spa session, and wondered why it wasn’t included on a schedule of Murphy’s district events sent out by his office last week. That release included a half-dozen groundbreakings, forums and two upcoming “Congress-On-Your-Corner” forums (4 p.m. Friday at the Slate Valley Museum in Granville and 11 a.m. Saturday at the Golden Harvest Farm in Valatie)......

Murphy has taken a middle ground on the White House’s health care proposal, expressing support for substantial reform and the idea of a public option as well as concerns about its impact on the federal deficit. (Murphy’s fiscally cautious side was displayed as well last week in his vote against the $2 billion replenishment of the “Cash for Clunkers” program.)

Now here's real political courage. Hold meetings and announce them to the press AFTER they've occurred.  Why not just use stock photos for your franked newsletter if they are just staged photo ops, Scott?

Then again, maybe this is the way Democratic Congressmen will need to greet their constituents these days.

At least MD's Frank Kratovil "took it like a man"  He's the exception. 

Albany Times Union: Opponents of Obama health care takeover are Nazis

Well, we have a winner, A major metropolitan newspaper violates Godwin"s Law and abandons all pretenses of being anything other than a shill for the DNC.  Go tell George Soros liberal media bias is alive and well in New York State.

Some of the high points in this trip down the low road.

"right wing front groups" " smear reform efforts" "front group"  "fool them into believing there is wide opposition to reform" "Putcht-like"

Jeez, folks, the New York Times found "wide opposition to reform" Are they too a tool of evil Republican lobbyists?

I suppose the oh so clever Mr. Karlin thinks present day Republicans and libertarians  are emulating this event by getting to the public forums early and being a tad bit rude to elected officials.

It's actually kind of disgusting to think that the mainstream press, who wrap themselves in the First Amendment when it suits their interests, now openly advocating silencing ordinary citizens trying to exercise the same right themselves. 


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