John Thune and Mitch Daniels are GOP fresh faces
Thune, a former congressman and a soft-spoken charmer with Gary Cooper’s good looks, just completed his first term in the Senate. Thune won instant popularity among Republicans when he established himself as a giant-killer, knocking off sitting Senate Democratic leader Tom Daschle in 2004. He grew up in Murdo, S.D., population 612, the son of a World War II aviator and war hero. He has strong appeal to evangelicals as a graduate of a California Bible college. He likes to focus on small companies and local business; he is clearly conservative but pragmatic. And stylistically, he is congenial, earnest and gracious. He can talk farming and football as easily as he can taxes and the deficit. As a sitting senator, he’ll have to defend some difficult votes–like supporting the TARP fund.
Indiana Gov. Mitch “The Blade” Daniels, one of the rare sitting politicians in this country who has actually shown the fortitude to cut budgets. He trimmed $250 million from the Indiana budget, saved $190 million by renegotiating government contracts and cut the state’s rate of spending growth in half. Daniels served as chief of staff to Senator Richard Lugar, was a senior advisor to President Ronald Reagan, was President George W. Bush’s budget director and has been elected twice governor, receiving more votes than anyone who has ever run for office in Indiana. He won 72 of 92 counties (Obama won 15), got 24 percent of the Democrat vote, 20 percent of African Americans, and won every age demographic. He inherited a state hundreds of millions in debt and since taking office has balanced every budget. And he’s done it while enacting the largest tax cut in state history, ethics and telecom reform, and a fully-funded tax- and debt-free transportation plan.
Will the Republican candidate be one of the well knowns or someone new and fresh? These two fresh faces look to be contenders. Joe Scarborough, Haley Barbour, Rick Perry, Rick Santorum, General David Petraeus, and Governor Chris Christie are other names I’ve heard may be in contention. The field looks well populated! Which ones will satisfy the narrow tests of Tea Partiers, Evangelicals and still appeal to Moderates?
I’m trying not to be snarky here, but I once was (a few years ago before bush the lesser!) a conservative and today I feel betrayed, so my disappointment and (sometimes) anger might come out snarky.
I was reading the latest installment about the Young Republicans election of their new chairman written by John Avlon, “Bullying Behind GOP “Racist” Win, and he states, “The Young Republicans faced a stark choice at their convention in Indianapolis yesterday as they chose their next leader: a center-right twentysomething interested in greater outreach, or a self-described “true conservative” who is almost 40 and spent last week dealing with Daily Beast reports about her beliefs, which are, at best, often hateful, and at worst, downright racist. The delegates, in a vote of 470 – 415, chose the latter.”
Calling the newly elected chairman a “true conservative,” made me wonder anew what that title means. I suspect it has a different meaning for different people and that just might be one of the biggest challenges facing The Republican Party today! Continue reading
Audra Shay, a 38-year-old Army veteran, mother, and event planner from Louisiana who has been endorsed by her governor, Bobby Jindal, is the current vice chairman of the Young Republicans and the leading candidate to be elected its chairman on Saturday, July 11,2009. Postings she made on her now-deleted Facebook page give insight into this favored candidate and tells us who is considered by Republicans to be worthy of a leadership role. Here’s what she had to say to her friends on Facebook:
On a thread where she initiated a political conversation by posting “WalMart just signed a death warrant” by “endorsing Obama’s healthcare plan,” a friend listed as Eric S. Piker, wrote “It’s the government making us commies… can’t even smoke in my damn car… whats next they going to issue toilet paper once a month… tell us how to wipe our asses…”
Two minutes later, Piker posted again saying “Obama Bin Lauden [sic] is the new terrorist… Muslim is on there side [sic]… need to take this country back from all of these mad coons… and illegals.” Shay responds eight minutes later with: “You tell em Eric! lol.”
In October 2008, in the wake of news that an effigy of Sarah Palin was being hung outside an affluent Hollywood home as an offensive Halloween decoration, Shay replied, returning to the “LOL” style that she employed after the “coons” comment: “What no ‘Obama in a noose? Come on now, its just freedome [sic] of speech, no one in Atlanta would take that wrong! Lol.”
She picked up the thread again the next morning with a clarification and a new insight. “Apparently I could not spell last night. I am wondering if the guys with the Palin noose would care if we had a bunch of homosexuals in a noose.”
Numerous posts in which Shay says that President Obama is “anti-American” and has “disdain of this country.” Continue reading