Republican establishment lines up behind Chris Christie

This article in the National Review makes it clear that the Republican Establishment and big money folks are lining up behind Chris Christie in 2016.

Yes, yes, it is absolutely disgusting that we are discussing 2016 in 2013.

Still, I am very interested in readers’ opinions: how different do you think a Chris Christie presidency would be from a Hillary Clinton presidency?

I see very little difference but am willing to be convinced otherwise. Christie might support a slightly smaller budget, but he will not make any significant cuts. He will support a money-printing Federal Reserve (just like Hillary). He doesn’t care about NSA spying (just like Hillary). He seems to be a Rudy Giuliani-type foreign policy hawk (just like Hillary). Is there any evidence he would support more conservative federal judges? (Perhaps). Is there any doubt he would mostly cave on social issues? (No doubt in my mind).

Personally, I see about a 3 percent difference between Christie and Hillary Clinton. Convince me I am wrong.

And if I am not wrong, why should any conservative/libertarian types support Christie?

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About Geoff B.

Geoff B has had three main careers. Some of them have overlapped. After attending Stanford University (class of 1985), he worked in journalism for several years until about 1992, when he took up his second career in telecommunications sales. In 1995, he took up his favorite and third career as father. Soon thereafter, Heavenly Father hit him over the head with a two-by-four (wielded by the Holy Ghost) and he woke up from a long sleep. Since then, he's been learning a lot about the Gospel. He still has a lot to learn. Geoff's held several Church callings: young men's president, high priest group leader, member of the bishopric, stake director of public affairs, media specialist for church public affairs, high councilman. He tries his best in his callings but usually falls short. Geoff has five children and lives in Colorado.

55 thoughts on “Republican establishment lines up behind Chris Christie

  1. Seems to me that the GOP will never learn. They keep putting up these big government socialists like McCain, Romney, and now Chris Christie. The GOP is most likely in for another loss, because most libertarians like myself will never vote for the lesser of two evils. We’ve had it with playing that game and will continue to vote our conscience (if we vote at all).

  2. If there is *anybody* who is going to expand the Federal government and executive powers in completely unprecedented ways, it is Chris Christie.

  3. I think that Romney was at least moderately conservative. Chris Christy isn’t even that. Rand Paul actually has a shot if his followers don’t mess it up by claiming anyone who doesn’t agree with everything that comes out of Rand Paul’s mouth is a traitor. He has strengths that his father didn’t have.

  4. As long as the National Review crowd hold the leadership and power in the Republican Party, we will enjoy one party rule in the USA. There is clearly no genuine opposition party as long as that situation exists. The Democrats will propose more redistribution of wealth, and the Republicans will provide them with mere token resistance while actually helping them achieve their legislative agenda. It is so… dishonest, and the American people are so… gullible.

  5. Jettboy wrote:
    I think that Romney was at least moderately conservative. Chris Christy isn’t even that. Rand Paul actually has a shot if his followers don’t mess it up by claiming anyone who doesn’t agree with everything that comes out of Rand Paul’s mouth is a traitor. He has strengths that his father didn’t have.

    Romney was not “moderately conservative” or anything else. He was a chameleon kissing up to one and all. That is why he lost. And don’t pin your hopes on Rand Paul. The problems in this country have gone way beyond the point of no return. Whether Rand Paul is “for real” or not makes no difference. The whole discussion has become a diversion. Without widespread, national repentance, this nation is doomed for socialists and conservatives a like.

  6. Question for those who have commented so far (and others): could you get excited about Rand Paul rather than Christie?

    How about Ted Cruz?

    How about Marco Rubio?

  7. For your reading pleasure, I present “the other side,” courtesy of The Nation magazine.

    Basically, progressives think Christie is a right-wing maniac, anti-women, anti-gays, hates the poor, loves pollution, blah-blah-blah.

    Here are some key excerpts:

    “Christie is no moderate. He’s a social conservative who opposes reproductive rights, has defunded Planned Parenthood and has repeatedly rejected attempts to restore state funding for family planning centers. He has vetoed money for clinics that provide health screenings for women, including mammograms and pap smears. He vetoed marriage equality.

    Christie’s consistent when it comes to reading from the right’s playbook. The governor announced early in his tenure that he was pulling New Jersey out of a regional carbon emissions reduction program, and then declared his intention to scale back the state’s renewable energy targets. And in the midst of this election year, he vetoed a plan for early voting—a move that, as the state’s largest newspaper suggested, Christie “knows will play well with Republicans nationally,” given that they “have led previous efforts to suppress voter turnout by curtailing early voting hours.”

    Christie is at his most militant when it comes to implementing the austerity agenda associated with the most conservative Republican governors. There’s a credible case to be made that he is “doing a Scott Walker on New Jersey,” as a Garden State headline suggested in early May, after the governor proposed gutting civil service protections. Christie makes no bones about his admiration for the Wisconsin governor, whose anti-labor crusade inspired mass protests, a recall attempt and miserable job-creation numbers. And Walker says he’s taken inspiration from Christie, who since his 2009 election has been bashing public employees, ripping teachers and matching tough talk with even tougher cuts.”

    http://www.thenation.com/article/174352/chris-christie-gop-moderate-fuhgeddaboudit#axzz2cXAYnyUq

  8. “The Democrats will propose more redistribution of wealth, and the Republicans will provide them with mere token resistance while actually helping them achieve their legislative agenda.”

    If this were actually true instead of some kind of wild fantasy, the Bush tax cuts would not have been indefinitely extended, and we would not now have the greatest income and wealth inequality since before the Great Depression.

  9. Bill, if you look big picture, it is undeniable that the Dems since the 1930s have proposed more redistribution of wealth and more government and *most* Republicans have provided simply token resistance while allowing the welfare state to grow. Despite wildly fantastic left-wing rhetoric, the government’s percentage of the economy has grown hugely over time with a few token down years here and there. The recent history of the Republic has been (again big picture) a left-wing that never gets enough government and always wants more taxes and a token resistance that sometimes wants even more government and sometimes tries, haltingly, to put the breaks on. And, very often, the Republicans do indeed help the Dems achieve ever-more government (think Medicare Part D, No Child Left Behind, doubling the size of the Dept of Education, etc, etc).

    http://www.usgovernmentspending.com/us_20th_century_chart.html

  10. It’s wild fantasy that the Democratic Party is not the party of redistribution?

    Please allow me a moment….

    hahahahahahalalalahahahahalalolololoololahahahahahahalalaooolololoolol

  11. Christie is a progressive that thinks libertarianism is dangerous. His Obama cow-towing after the hurricane last year disgusted me. The only thing he has for me over Hillary is simply that he’s not Hillary. If it’s between those two (and I fervently pray that it’s not), he’s got my vote.

    I think Rand is for real, and I don’t think he’s nuts like his dad. I couldn’t stand Ron Paulians, but I’m more and more identifying with the Rand Paulians. The one thing that gets me about Rand is he– like almost all politicians– constantly sidesteps difficult questions. If he wants to brand himself as the non-politician, he needs to start acting less like one.

  12. My guess is that Christie will pull a Romney/McCain and become significantly more conservative just in time for the Republican primaries. This will hurt him with moderates such as myself, but he’ll need to do it in order to win the primaries.

    I think Christie’s biggest weakness in getting votes will, unfortunately, be something completely silly–his weight. I’m not sure we’ve had a heavy president since President Taft. There’s certainly bias against people who are overweight, and I think we’ll see some of that.

    I’m hoping Clinton will receive some real competition in the primaries too. I haven’t heard much about other possible Democratic candidates, and that worries me.

  13. Tim, I think his weight will actually be an advantage. Most people are overweight in the country, so he is more representative. It is a refreshing change of aesthetic, and will strike people as being more genuine, more “maverick,” more real. Even though prejudice is huge against obese people, with Christie, I have a feeling it will actually produce the opposite effect.

    I think Christie would be a great president, and I’m with Geoff, that there would be practically zero difference between him and Hillary, other than the public’s perception. We’ve seen that Obama is practically identical to GWBush in all of his policies and actions, but opposite in the public’s perception of him.

    Geoff has it right. For all practical purposes, there are few differences in policy between modern Republican and Democratic presidential administrations, even though they are worlds apart in their rhetoric. But this is not for lack of desire. Obama would love to have closed Guantanamo, and have universal state run health care. But the very nature of the organization of poltical power in Washington hammers presidents into a centrist mould. To govern from the periphery would be suicide, if it weren’t already an absolute impossibility, given the alliances presidents must make in order to gain and keep power. Geoff calls it “left-wing,” but that’s only from his libertarian perspective. It’s really solidly in the center of the US’s diverse political spectrum.

  14. Christie has one conservative bona fide that Romney also had and makes one wonder about his actual governing if he were elected president. He is about the most conservative politician who could get elected in his state. His policies are for the most part very conservative versus the average in New Jersey.
    It is not necessarily fake or pandering if Christie moves right when running for president. It may be more in line with what he thinks anyway. Governors of more conservative states and all Senators have a much more difficult time explaining conservative drift when running for president. He is a New Jersey conservative and he is effective at governing. These are positives. How conservative is he on a national scale is still somewhat unknown.

  15. Tim, I would like to take on this “I liked McCain and Romney until they became so conservative” argument because I think it is fundamentally illogical. You state a version of it above. “My guess is that Christie will pull a Romney/McCain and become significantly more conservative just in time for the Republican primaries.”

    Here is the problem with such a view: if you are truly a “moderate” you want somebody in between Ted Cruz (the “far right”) and Keith Ellison (the “far left”), right?

    If you take those two poles, McCain and Romney would be almost exactly in the middle, along with Lindsey Graham, Joe Lieberman, etc.

    Now, granted McCain and Romney tried to *sound* more conservative for the primaries, but a smart person would say, “oh, they’re just trying to win the primaries, everybody knows they will govern as moderates.”

    So, the argument that you are a moderate but can’t vote for McCain or Romney because they *sound* too conservative is fundamentally illogical because politicians always say things to get elected and therefore anybody with half a brain knows that they will government differently than they sound in the primaries.

    So, I can only come to one of three conclusions about people who say “I am a moderate and would have supported McCain/Romney but they were too conservative in the primaries:” 1)they are not really moderates but like to say they are moderates. 2)they are not really thinking through the whole issue but are being swayed by too much time reading the Huff Post/Daily Kos/The Nation/NY Times and are therefore probably not moderates or 3)they want to punish McCain/Romney for just being typical politicians, which is OK but then you have to explain why you would go vote for another politician (i.e. Obama) who lies through his teeth every time he speaks.

    On the other hand, the people who say they couldn’t support McCain/Romney because they turned too conservative in the primaries go on to criticize the Republican party for being “too right wing,” etc, etc. I am thinking of the typical David Brooks argument here. But here is the dilemma: the Republican party can hold its nose and nominate a McCain/Romney type and *no matter how moderate they are the liberals will say they are right-wing ideologues*. Or, they can nominate somebody who really is a conservative/libertarian, and the left will say exactly the same things about the candidate. So, if you are a Republican voter you may as well nominate the most conservative person you can because the supposed “moderates” are going to hate/her no matter how moderate he or she is.

    So, supposed moderates will sit around saying, “Chris Christie might be an acceptable candidate, but he is going to have to turn conservative to win the primaries and then we will hate him.” Which really means: we will hate whoever the Republicans nominate, even if it were a resurrected Teddy Roosevelt. I cannot imagine how a conservative Republican voter could, after all these years, be swayed by the argument that we should nominate another supposed “moderate.”

  16. “We’ve seen that Obama is practically identical to GWBush in all of his policies and actions, but opposite in the public’s perception of him.”

    Please allow me to throw a douse of cold water on this simplism. Obama is identical with GWB on *many* issues (particularly on spying and military matters, prosecution of war, economic governing [not theory], etc.). But it is absolutely wrong to say that they are the same in “all” policies.

    George W. Bush would never have gone to Planned Parenthood the same week that Gosnell was found guilty and pronounced a blessing of “God bless you” to that coven of abortionists. http://michellemalkin.com/2013/04/26/obama-thank-you-planned-parenthood-and-god-bless-you/

    George W. Bush would never have signed legislation that forces Christian owners of businesses to pay for abortifacients. http://blog.acton.org/archives/57751-hobby-lobby-wins-significant-victory-for-religious-freedom.html

    I can multiply other examples if I wanted to, but I think the point is clear.

    Let us not succumb to an overly simplistic narrative with respect to who these people are. Obama and Bush Jr. are not in the same ballpark on a host of issues, and it’s absurd to believe that they are “the same”.

    Note: I am not saying that there isn’t huge carryover between the two administrations. And I am not a cheerleader for Bush Jr. He was a disappointment to me.

  17. As for the Christie versus Hillary comparison, I think that many have forgotten how liberal Hillary really is. There are vast differences. The budget and size and scope of government are two key areas.

  18. First, it should not be that surprising or controversial that government spending goes up. We are a much wealthier, more populous, and complex society. One hundred years ago we spend 40% of our income on food, compared to 10% today, so we have much more disposable income for things like transportation, on which we spent almost nothing 100 years ago, or government.

    Second, the main redistribution that has been going on for the last forty years is from the workers to the shareholders (as a shareholder, I can’t complain, but then, neither do I think that I somehow “deserve” the returns). Worker productivity has soared over 80% during that period while real wages are flat.

    Third, the story of the recent recession and tepid recovery has been one of recovery despite continued government job cuts. Almost all the decrease in unemployment has been in the private sector. If job growth in the public sector had recovered as in every previous recession, instead of being further cut by austerity policies, unemployment would be much lower and economic growth higher. In the meantime, the deficit has been cut almost in half from the levels of a couple of years ago.

    Finally, Medicare part D (a giveaway to pharma companies), and No Child left Behind (a ridiculous law, that nevertheless was never funded at expected levels) were Democrats helping Republicans increase spending (something they have rarely failed to do when holding the White House), not the other way around.

    As for Chris Christie, having seen him for many years up close from across the Hudson, he is the type that likes to pick on people who are less powerful than he is. I lost any good feelings for him when for purely ideological reasons he cancelled the rail tunnel project, which would have provided many jobs in the midst of the recession and economic benefits for years to come, even after the majority of the costs would have been paid for by NY and the federal government.

  19. I don’t ascribe myself to any particular party, but as a young African-American woman, I would consider voting for Governor Christie in 2016, as out of the other GOP members-Rand Paul, Ted Cruz, Paul Ryan-are a little too extreme in their stance on social issues.
    As a young woman, I think the thing that would likely keep me from voting Republican in 2016 would be their extreme stances on abortion, financial aid for young people, voting rights, immigration, fiscal equality, and healthcare. I think that they are doing a great job of alienating minorities, women, and immigrants. Another thing that bothers me about the GOP is that no one within the party is willing to step up and denounce the utter craziness that Representatives and Senators are espousing about very complex, important issues, especially when it comes to women’s bodies. I also fault Democrats for not denouncing that because at the end of the day, I don’t care whether you’re a Republican, Libertarian, Independent, Democrat, whatever you declare yourself to be politically, right is right, and wrong is wrong, and no one in either party has come out against these people, their peers in politics to say, that is wrong.
    I think that a Chris Christie/Hillary Clinton race in 2016 could be an interesting one. I think Christie has the ability to move to the center, and I also think he’s promising in that he’s willing to work with the other side. He’s more of the outlier, and I think that’s a good thing. I am cautiously optimistic that his weight won’t factor in too much, I’m hoping that people will focus on his politics, but history does have a tendency to repeat itself. Taft was criticized for his weight, but…people voted for him; juxtaposed in the 21st century, I agree with Tim that his weight could be an issue, and I suppose we won’t see how significant until 2016.
    I think the Democrats are holding steady, as far as their party’s fundamentals, but I do think that they do need to speak up for the Affordable Care Act; they voted for it, but then immediately cowered back as they’ve allowed for the GOP to have the loudest voice on it. If they want to keep votes in key demographics, then need to hit the stump for ACA, spell out the basic changes that will roll out over the next few years. They need to the stump hard on that. I think another problem that the Democrats face is Benghazi. I can definitely see that as one of the major talking points in the race for the nominations.
    The GOP has painted itself in a corner since 2012; they’ve not only blocked progress in Congress, they have yet to present alternatives to ACA if they do succeed in repealing it (which is highly unlikely as it is the law of the land now, but I guess their thinking is 41 time’s the charm?), they’ve now got to dial back their “Repeal Obamacare” rhetoric to their base because of their failed attempts, they are threatening to shut down the government, which will have an affect on millions, they are all over the place as far as their party’s fundamentals, and again, they are doing their very best to make sure that they once again lose a large percentage of votes in key demographics, that frankly, they would need in order to be able to be viable in 2016.
    Unfortunately for Christie, if he were to win the nomination, I think for him it would be an uphill battle with his own party because the GOP just simply can’t get itself together politically or ideologically. It seems like only the loudest, most extreme, irrational, and bad faith arguments are steering the direction of the party. I think as a whole, if the GOP “stars” want a hope and a prayer of a real presidential race, I think that they need to be the loudest voices for moving the party more toward the center.
    For our fellow past-Mormon, Marco Rubio, I think that he could be a fairly strong contender if he moves on immigration. I think that would be a HUGE boost for him.
    Ted Cruz? Yuck. I’m from Texas, and while I love this state, it seems that politically, we just seem to gift wrap our own special brand of crazy and put a neat little bow on it and deliver it to Washington. You’re welcome, America;) It should be in Canada by Saturday:)
    I think that if the GOP continues to move further and further to the extreme right, if they continue to pass unpopular legislation in their respective states, if they continue to just be the “Party of No” and offer up no solutions, and continue to alienate key demographics like minorities and young people, 2016 will be as abysmal a loss among those demos as it was last year in 2012. They have GOT to reassess their strategy if they want my…respectful, serious consideration in 2016.
    I totally want a Clinton/Christie smack down! Bring. It. On!

  20. Michael Towns:
    “George W. Bush would never have gone to Planned Parenthood the same week that Gosnell was found guilty and pronounced a blessing of “God bless you” to that coven of abortionists. http://michellemalkin.com/2013/04/26/obama-thank-you-planned-parenthood-and-god-bless-you/

    George W. Bush would never have signed legislation that forces Christian owners of businesses to pay for abortifacients. http://blog.acton.org/archives/57751-hobby-lobby-wins-significant-victory-for-religious-freedom.html

    Michael, I have to disagree with your statements.
    First of all, Planned Parenthood is not a “coven of abortionists.” In fact, out of all of the other services that Planned Parenthood provides (family planning, comprehensive sex education, free mammograms, well-baby checkups, providing contraception) abortion services only make up about 3%. Read here: http://articles.washingtonpost.com/2011-04-15/opinions/35230231_1_federal-medicaid-funds-abortion-care-sexual-health
    Second of all, birth control or OCPs (oral contraceptive prescriptions), or IUDs (intrauterine devices) are NOT synonymous with abortifacients. In fact, there is only one known abortifacient-RU-486, which was proposed some time ago, back when I was in middle school-and it is not FDA approved. The FDA approved OCPs on the market and covered by healthcare insurance are NOT abortion inducing drugs; they prevent pregnancy. They do not terminate existing pregnancies, and women don’t obtain contraception simply to have indiscriminate sex, which seems to be the perception that people have. OCPs regulate a woman’s cycle, use it to combat PDD (premenstrual dysmorphic disorder, an extreme of PMS) PMS, they do prevent pregnancy, they also balance hormones, and again, they prevent pregnancy. To equate contraception with abortifacients I feel is a scare tactic and it’s also perpetuating dangerous misconceptions about contraception. Read here: http://articles.washingtonpost.com/2011-04-15/opinions/35230231_1_federal-medicaid-funds-abortion-care-sexual-health
    You say that the legislation is forcing Hobby Lobby to provide contraceptives to their employees, but on the flip side, they are forcing their beliefs down their employees’ throats and inserting themselves into their workers’ personal family plans. Various forms of contraception have been used by women for centuries. Whether you’re religious or not, people should have the right to plan their families how they want to.
    It bothers me that men are the ones talking about women’s health. That’s really funny. Please stop with the contraception misconception! Don’t you ever talk to your wives? Seriously.

  21. Bill, as usual, your comments here are almost completely wrong. It is worth debunking your liberal propaganda because it is so commonly expressed that some people might actually be fooled by it.

    “First, it should not be that surprising or controversial that government spending goes up. We are a much wealthier, more populous, and complex society. One hundred years ago we spend 40% of our income on food, compared to 10% today, so we have much more disposable income for things like transportation, on which we spent almost nothing 100 years ago, or government.”

    The most prosperous times in recent U.S. history, the 1920s, the 1940s and 1950s and even most of the 1960s and the 1990s, have been times when government has decreased as a percentage of GDP so that the private sector can be released to create economic growth. The least prosperous times, the 1970s and the last 10 years, have been times of massive increases in government spending. So, no, increasing government spending decreases wealth, not increases it.

    “Second, the main redistribution that has been going on for the last forty years is from the workers to the shareholders (as a shareholder, I can’t complain, but then, neither do I think that I somehow “deserve” the returns). Worker productivity has soared over 80% during that period while real wages are flat.”

    The reasons for stagnant worker wages are complex, but you imply here that the economy is some kind of zero-sum game where there is a fixed amount of wealth. Nothing could be farther from the truth. As the economy grows, more wealth is created for the majority of people. The economy does not remain stagnant. Thus, during the 1990s, the economy grew quite well (thanks in part to the Clinton tax cuts in capital gains but mostly because a Republican Congress actually kept government spending down), and worker wages increased and poverty decreased. So, we were on the right track in the 1990s. What happened since then? 1)A Fed-created high tech and housing bubble (i.e., too much government). 2)Massive increases in spending by Dems and Republicans on domestic programs (ie, too much government) 3)Massive increases in spending on the military (ie, too much government) 4)Massive increases in government on the state and local level (i.e. too much government). Government spending has decreased capital available for the private sector; companies are afraid to invest and to hire because of government regulations; recent tax hikes from Obamacare and the payroll tax hike are affecting hiring; and, finally, the Fed-created inflation is eating away at worker salaries. In short, all of the problems related to stagnating worker salaries are directly related to too much government, not too little.

    “Third, the story of the recent recession and tepid recovery has been one of recovery despite continued government job cuts. Almost all the decrease in unemployment has been in the private sector. If job growth in the public sector had recovered as in every previous recession, instead of being further cut by austerity policies, unemployment would be much lower and economic growth higher. In the meantime, the deficit has been cut almost in half from the levels of a couple of years ago.”

    Austerity? Give me a break. The only thing that is keeping our economy from completely imploding is the modest stabilization of government spending that has taken place since the Republicans took back the House in 2010. Real austerity would be a 20 percent cut across the board in every government program. Instead, spending has continued to increase but less quickly. Every Dem budget proposal has called for massive increases in spending, and thank goodness they have not happened or we would really be in the crapper.

    I mostly agree with your last two paragraphs, although again you are completely ignorant of the realities of state budgets and appear to think that money somehow grows on trees and can be thrown willy-nilly at whatever make-work project liberal bureaucrats invent. A rail tunnel may or may not be worthwhile, but how about letting the private sector finance it and charge tolls? Nah, makes way too much sense for brain-dead liberals.

  22. Tossman [WAY back]: I think Rand is for real, and I don’t think he’s nuts like his dad. I couldn’t stand Ron Paulians, but I’m more and more identifying with the Rand Paulians. The one thing that gets me about Rand is he– like almost all politicians– constantly sidesteps difficult questions. If he wants to brand himself as the non-politician, he needs to start acting less like one.

    You can’t have your cake and eat it too. The reason you thought Ron Paul was nuts was because he followed your advice: he didn’t sidestep hard questions, and didn’t act like a politician. He stated his views and answered the questions, and it made him look crazy to a lot of people. People are used to their politicians constantly metering their opinions and only expressing the politically correct, popular stances. Ron Paul did not.

    If Rand Paul followed your advice, he would look as crazy to you as his dad.

  23. “I don’t ascribe myself to any particular party, but as a young African-American woman, I would consider voting for Governor Christie in 2016, as out of the other GOP members-Rand Paul, Ted Cruz, Paul Ryan-are a little too extreme in their stance on social issues.”

    D, you are exactly the type of person I hoped would comment on this issue. You are the type of person the Republican establishment hopes to capture by promoting Chris Christie, i.e. the swing voter who may be swayed to vote for a “moderate” Republican. Based on the rest of your comments, however, I would be willing to bet you a Spanish-language Book of Mormon that there is absolutely no way you will vote for Christie over Hillary. In 2016, we will be hearing TV ad after TV ad reminding us that Christie is a right-wing fanatic who wants to take away abortion rights and birth control and hates the poor and wants to pollute the environment, etc, etc, etc. None of this is true, of course, but the liberal press will be full of stories about this or that controversial statement that Christie made during the debates and his veto of gay marriage, etc, etc, etc. It does not matter that Chris Christie really is a moderate — the liberal press will turn him into a right-wing monster (witness the link from The Nation above).

    So, no, there is absolutely no way you will vote for Chris Christie over Hillary. I am not saying you are lying. I believe you when you say you might be willing to consider him. But it is simply impossible for me to believe that in Nov. 2016 you will vote for him over Hillary or Biden or whoever else the Dems put up.

    So, given that no matter who the Republicans nominate, he will be vilified as a right-wing monster, why should the Republicans nominate a moderate at all? It seems to me that standing for principle is much more important in the long term than electing a Democrat with an R after his name. So, the more I consider this issue the more I am absolutely convinced that the only solution is somebody like Rand Paul or Ted Cruz. Even if the Republicans lose.

  24. Good point LDSP about Ron Paul. Ron Paul is the most honest politician probably since the 19th century. Unfortunately, this also means that he says unpopular things (and let’s face it, he is not a smooth talker so sometimes his message gets garbled). Rand Paul has learned the hard way that you have to be nuanced sometimes and refuse to answer loaded questions. I wish more people in politics could be like Ron Paul, but unfortunately it is simple impossible these days.

  25. Well, it’s possible, but you just get branded as a nut. I don’t think an honest, straightforward politician will ever be branded as anything but a nut.

  26. Geoff:
    See, that’s the thing! I don’t think that Governor Christie is a right-wing fanatic. I think that he is capable of not only helping to move the party more toward the center, but also widening the base. I’m not from Jersey, but I think that to this point, he’s done a great job as governor, especially after the hurricane, and I think that his willingness to have civil conversations with President Obama for the sake of his state in the aftermath is great. I don’t agree with all of his politics, but I could see myself voting for him.
    I’m excited to see what happens either way because 2016 will be my third time voting in a Presidential Election.
    Yes, the liberal press will probably paint him as a monster and another GOP puppet, but likewise, the same you-know-what storm is gonna hit Hillary Clinton from the right-wing press (i.e. Fox News) accusing her of being another liberal feminist that’s ruining America, which will likely be untrue. That’s just the way it is. I fully expect mud-slinging from both sides. That’s not news to me.
    I think that a Christie/Clinton race will be the one to watch, though.
    But you made a good point in your post: we’re thinking about 2016, and it’s 2013!
    We still have a long way to go. We shall see…
    I’m curious:
    You have a more conservative view.
    The issues that I mentioned in my previous comments, these are things that the GOP is doing that presents the image of them being retrogressive. I mean, the GOP stance on issues like abortion and voting rights have been made pretty clear in many states with Republican governors throughout the country, so there’s no denying that the few people who have the loudest voices in the party are at best, incredibly misguided on these issues.
    Likewise, on the Democratic side, they have been quiet.
    Do you agree with the direction the conservative movement is going? As a citizen, and a conservative, what is your vision for this country, and is the GOP realistic in its approach to achieving that vision?
    Is there anything that they’ve been doing that seems retrogressive?
    What do you think needs to happen in the GOP in order to sway a 26 year old African American female voter like me or potential voters in future elections who are not politically affiliated in 2016 for any candidate that the Republicans present?

  27. *Woops, I meant to finish my point about the Democrats. I think that they’ve done a poor job of hitting the stump and going to town halls like their Republican peers have and supporting their stance on the issues.
    They’ve been largely silent in states where strict new voting laws and abortion restrictions have been passed. The Democratic base definitely needs to be galvanized.

  28. “The issues that I mentioned in my previous comments, these are things that the GOP is doing that presents the image of them being retrogressive. I mean, the GOP stance on issues like abortion and voting rights have been made pretty clear in many states with Republican governors throughout the country, so there’s no denying that the few people who have the loudest voices in the party are at best, incredibly misguided on these issues.
    Likewise, on the Democratic side, they have been quiet.
    Do you agree with the direction the conservative movement is going? As a citizen, and a conservative, what is your vision for this country, and is the GOP realistic in its approach to achieving that vision?
    Is there anything that they’ve been doing that seems retrogressive?
    What do you think needs to happen in the GOP in order to sway a 26 year old African American female voter like me or potential voters in future elections who are not politically affiliated in 2016 for any candidate that the Republicans present?”

    D, I am an old guy who grew up politically in the 1960s and 1970s, so my perspective is probably a bit different.

    I think abortion should be legal for the first 10 weeks or so in all cases, and I accept the Church’s position for exceptions for rape and incest and the health of the mother. I think abortion after 20 weeks is infanticide and should be illegal in all but the most extreme cases. All birth control should be legal. I think that position is a very moderate, sensible position, but from the perspective of many left-wingers it is somehow too conservative, but I am sorry if you believe in abortion on demand for babies in the six or seventh month of pregnancy you are in favor of murder, plain and simple. The vast majority of Americans are in favor of legal abortion in the first 10 weeks but against abortion after the 24th week, so my position is right in line with the majority and makes perfect sense. The Democratic party is way, way out of the mainstream on the abortion issue.

    But abortion is a sideshow meant to get young women like yourself all worked up about something that is not, at the end of the day, going to affect you or any of your friends. There will always, the rest of your life, be someplace you can go to get a legal abortion in America. If Roe v Wade is overturned, and you live in Mississippi, you will be able to take a bus to Atlanta or St. Louis or someplace else to get an abortion. For the vast majority of people who live in or near big cities, nothing significant will change. So, frankly, I just don’t see why anybody would let himself or herself get worked up about this issue.

    The real issue for you as a young African American woman — and for everybody else — is: can you get a job with decent pay? And when you get married and have kids, will you and your husband both be able to get decent jobs with decent pay? And to answer this you need to think about why people in the 1950s and 1960s and even the 1990s could easily get decent jobs and why people in 2013 cannot. The answer is simple: there is simply too much government getting in the way of businesses. I have owned several businesses over the years, and when the government increases regulation and taxes businesses hire fewer people. So, if you want to ensure your financial future — even to live a simple life without any frills — you need to favor politicians who will decrease government spending, cut regulations and free up the private sector to provide jobs.

    There are two other issues that I think everybody should care about very deeply: which politicians are likely to get us involved in unnecessary wars and which politicians respect civil liberties and the Constitution and respect our privacy. On both of these issues, there are basically two groups: the large group of statists who always seem to favor more war and don’t care about civil liberties and the small group that wants to avoid new wars and which respects the Constitution and civil liberties. All of the mainstream candidates — Hillary, Biden, Chris Christie — will want more war and could care less about our civil liberties. So I simply cannot support them.

    So, to answer your questions, I would, if I were you, support Rand Paul who seems to be the only person who cares about the real issues that would affect your life, i.e., the economy, the wars and civil liberties.

    (Rand Paul is pro-life and will appoint pro-life judges. As I say, even if the Supreme Court overturned Roe v Wade there will always be legal abortion in this country. So I just think it is a big mistake to make this your number one priority because it is not likely to ever affect you, whereas the other big issues I mention will definitely affect you).

  29. In North Dakota, the legislature passed the country’s most restrictive bill, which bans abortions after 6 weeks of pregnancy.
    The problem with that is that most women don’t find out about their pregnancies that early.
    The second problem is that most-if not all-of the restriction passed in the country don’t allow for exceptions of rape, incest, or life of the mother/baby is in danger.
    The third is that their restrictions would disenfranchise segments of their state’s population because these restrictions will also limit access to clinics like Planned Parenthood.
    Fourth, the GOP isn’t helping their cause by espousing misconceptions and calloused, shameful, ignorant remarks about a woman’s body, her situation, and rape. There’s obviously a need for a refresher course in comprehensive sex education.
    Fifth, it’s a little baffling to me that they’re all about “protecting life” but then they spread vitriol about the use of birth control and support extreme stances on how contraceptives are masquerading as abortifacients. Um, excuse me, when was the last time you had a chat about contraceptives? I would hope with your spouse because um, you DID exercise the right to plan your family the way you want to, right? You do understand how contraceptive works, right? Just sayin’.
    Sixth, here in the state of Texas, the authors of the restrictions that passed here, didn’t include more funding for the Foster Care/CPS system in lieu of the possibility of an increased number of children being put into the system.
    Seventh, here in Texas, the new restriction would disenfranchise a huge segment of our population, which happens to be Hispanic, and it would prevent women who are living in rural areas from having access to some form of reproductive care in the most Southern region of the state.
    Eighth, the GOP is incredibly out of touch with the issues that women are facing. They’ve turned a complex issue into an Us vs. Them culture war instead of actually talking to poor women, talking to women in urban areas, instead of taking the emotion and hubris out of it and really asking women about their concerns for their families.
    Ninth, this, I feel is a distractor issue because the GOP has yet to produce a plan as to how they are going to fix the healthcare system, the economy, and grow jobs. They’ve 40 times tried to repeal Obamacare, but have no alternatives to offer their base.
    Tenth, no matter how many restrictions are put in place, women will find a way. We’ve proven that throughout our history, and it’s ugly and bloody. Women have been incredibly resourceful for centuries when it comes to planning our families and making decisions about our OWN bodies.
    Men will NEVER understand a woman’s body and our experiences with it. I don’t care if you’re a doctor. It’s important that women are given options in a safe, reliable place. We can and should be trusted to make our own decisions about our personal health.

  30. Goeff:
    Thanks for the response.
    Very good insight to take into consideration.
    I agree, that women will always be able to legally obtain an abortion in this country, but the issue (at least here in Texas) is just what you proposed: proximity and access to a facility that provides abortion. It doesn’t make sense to have to travel a long distance to a clinic when there’s one in your area/region. It’s the disenfranchisement and spreading of false information concerning women’s health that I take issue with.

  31. D, I understand your position. When I was in my 20s I cared a lot of abortion and women’s rights, just as you do. I still do, and I favor common sense solutions that respect women’s bodies but also recognize that at some point — after 20 weeks, after 24 weeks — the fetus becomes a baby with its own rights. Nobody knows exactly when that happens, but perhaps it is after we can detect a heart beating? As religious people, we know there are two steps in the formation of a human being. Step 1 is the creation of the body and step two is the infusion of the spirit into the body. A human being becomes a human being when the spirit enters the body, and we don’t know when exactly that happens, but it makes sense that it takes place sometime after four weeks of pregnancy and sometime before 24 weeks. In any case, we ignore at our own peril the human rights of the baby itself.

    Having said that, I still think it is worth sharing with you a bit of wisdom I have learned over the years. The number one issue for you when you are a bit older will most likely be whether or not you and your husband can get a job. And when you have kids you will not want them to go to war and you will want them to be able to get jobs and live a dignified life without the government spying on them. So these three issues — jobs, war and civil liberties — should be the most important issues for all of us. Abortion is not unimportant but it pales in comparison to those three issues.

  32. “You say that the legislation is forcing Hobby Lobby to provide contraceptives to their employees, but on the flip side, they are forcing their beliefs down their employees’ throats and inserting themselves into their workers’ personal family plans.”

    No, they’re not. They aren’t forcing their employees to do anything with their personal money or beliefs. What Hobby Lobby objects to is being forced by the federal government to take a position that is contrary to their first amendment rights. In actuality, you’re missing the huge point with the Hobby Lobby case.

    “It bothers me that men are the ones talking about women’s health. That’s really funny. Please stop with the contraception misconception! Don’t you ever talk to your wives? Seriously.”

    So, let me get this straight: because I have a penis and two testicles, I’m not allowed to take reasoned positions on whether or not abortion is the death of an innocent human being? Think carefully about that. Your position is actually the sexist one here.

    As for my wife, we are on the same page on these issues. And she’s the one with a Masters degree in biomedical engineering, not me. I talk to my wife all the time, and I listen to her. It’s insulting to have liberals like you assume that I don’t listen or talk to my wife and that’s the reason why I have “conservative” viewpoints. My wife is one of the smartest people I’ve ever met in my life, and she totally disagrees with the Planned Parenthood dogma. So put that in your pipe and smoke it.

  33. Absolutely, and it is a concern, as well as what will happen after you’re done with working. Retirement is another issue, and it seems as though that lifestyle is getting further and further away.
    I’m a high school teacher, and I would like to think that I could retire at a reasonable age and be able to live fairly well and modestly, but I feel that that’s something that may not happen in the time that I expect.
    The wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have had a huge impact, which has contributed to massive government spending. Fmr. President George W. Bush allowed our armed forces to enter into two wars, which at the time was a very unpopular move, and it still is. These are two widely unpopular wars, and we need to definitely lower military spending abroad and begin funneling that into our domestic revenue.
    Another thing that I would like to hear a 2016 GOP candidate speak on is infrastructure and investment in innovation and clean energy. I believe that those three areas would help to grow jobs, and also improve and build up our nation.
    Our infrastructure is decades behind this current age, so that’s a conversation I would love to see any candidate have now, actually.
    Because I’m a teacher, education is a huge issue that I would like to see tackled in this administration, as well as in the GOP race. We need education reform that makes sense, that’s practical and realistic for public school teachers like myself.
    Really great insights, Geoff. I think all of us-regardless of political leanings-have a lot to consider.

  34. Michael Towns:
    Insulting you personally wasn’t my intention.
    I was just merely pointing out the intellectual dishonesty that some conservatives, not all, are using to further their campaign against choice and the conversation about what happens inside a woman’s body.
    Todd Aikin is an example of that intellectual dishonesty with his “legitimate rape” comments. That’s the point that I was making.
    I apologize if you were offended because that wasn’t my intention.
    I don’t consider myself liberal or conservative, but I do consider myself to be a person that wants to do the right thing.
    As far as the Hobby Lobby lawsuit goes, the reason why I said that is because there’s this misconception about the circumstances under which contraceptives will be used. These employees for Hobby Lobby could very well be Christians, Christian wives or husbands who need birth control or emergency contraception.
    There is nothing in the Scriptures that prohibits the use of contraceptives.
    Just to clarify: even emergency contraceptives like Plan B and the new one, Ella, do not terminate pregnancies. These two drugs have to be taken in a certain time frame. Plan B must be taken within 72 hours after intercourse, and Ella can be taken up to 5 days afterward. In the studies, it shows that these two emergency contraceptives do not terminate pregnancies. Both of these drugs follow the life cycle of the sperm after intercourse.
    I was simply pointing out to you that contraceptives are NOT abortifacients, which is something I’m sure that your wife knows because she’s in the medical field.
    With my other comment about a woman’s experience with her body, I hold to that, but again, in terms of intellectual honesty. Let’s have a conversation about a woman’s body using actual facts, not emotionally charged rhetoric that some conservatives in the party are using.
    I have no doubt that there are plenty of people out there who understand this issue in context, both liberal and conservative.
    We just have to agree to disagree about Planned Parenthood. I think that Planned Parenthood is a great resource for reproductive health, and I think that they do more good than harm in providing preventive health services. I think that again, that one aspect of their services puts a dark cloud over the other services they provide to poor rural and urban areas.
    Both of my parents are medical professionals: mom’s an RN (currently working psych) and my dad was a combat medic and medical technician (now in law enforcement). They’ve worked in poor areas, and they have seen the impact of these people having access to these services. Planned Parenthood and other similar clinics provide health screenings, mammograms, well-baby check ups, they educate people in the community about contraception and sexual health, they do STD tests, and they serve men and women from all walks of life. Both of my parents have worked at the health screening fairs given when we were living in Chicago, and they both agree that Planned Parenthood is an asset to any community.
    So, like I said, I have a different perspective on Planned Parenthood because of my parents’ work with them.
    But I think that we both can agree that abortion as an issue is a distractor. It’s never going to go away, it will always be legal, regardless of how you and I feel about it, and Planned Parenthood will never go away.
    We need to shift our focus back to jobs, the economy, and education.

  35. “Insulting you personally wasn’t my intention.”

    Thank you, apology accepted. Don’t worry, it just gets my goat a little when people assume that I haven’t come by my ideals without an incredible amount of reading, study, thought, philosophy, and conversation with folks that are smarter than I am.

    “I was just merely pointing out the intellectual dishonesty that some conservatives, not all, are using to further their campaign against choice and the conversation about what happens inside a woman’s body.
    Todd Aikin is an example of that intellectual dishonesty with his “legitimate rape” comments. That’s the point that I was making.”

    I agree with you! Todd Aikin was a dufus. But he was also an outlier. Democrats have engaged in intellectual dishonesty of their own when they try to paint conservatives with the Todd Aikin brush. They do it for crass political purposes, of course, but it’s still dishonest. Can we agree that Republicans and Democrats are destroying America?

    “I don’t consider myself liberal or conservative, but I do consider myself to be a person that wants to do the right thing.”

    The vast majority want to do the right thing. The problem is how we approach and ascertain the truth.

    “As far as the Hobby Lobby lawsuit goes, the reason why I said that is because there’s this misconception about the circumstances under which contraceptives will be used. These employees for Hobby Lobby could very well be Christians, Christian wives or husbands who need birth control or emergency contraception.
    There is nothing in the Scriptures that prohibits the use of contraceptives.
    Just to clarify: even emergency contraceptives like Plan B and the new one, Ella, do not terminate pregnancies. These two drugs have to be taken in a certain time frame. Plan B must be taken within 72 hours after intercourse, and Ella can be taken up to 5 days afterward. In the studies, it shows that these two emergency contraceptives do not terminate pregnancies. Both of these drugs follow the life cycle of the sperm after intercourse.”

    There are two fundamental points that need to be highlighted with respect to this Hobby Lobby issue. Number one is simply this: it’s for Hobby Lobby and their owner’s conscience to determine whether something violates their religious belief. As the appeals court judge stated when he ruled for HL in a temporary injunction against the Obama Administration, it’s not a judge’s role to be a theologian. If a person believes that something is a sin, it’s a sin, regardless of the biochemistry. This is very important! Religious conscience trumps government definitions. Secondly, for the government to eventually prevail against HL means that religiously devout people aren’t allowed to compete in the marketplace. Can you see how that would be a travesty and totally contrary to the American way?

    “We just have to agree to disagree about Planned Parenthood. I think that Planned Parenthood is a great resource for reproductive health, and I think that they do more good than harm in providing preventive health services. I think that again, that one aspect of their services puts a dark cloud over the other services they provide to poor rural and urban areas.”

    The way I see it is this: I don’t care if they dress up as Santa over the holidays and pass out benjamins in the street to homeless folk. Mussolini made the trains run on time, but did that absolve him of his immoral actions? Just because they do some good doesn’t give them a free pass for all the evil they do. And they do evil. I’ve seen the hidden videos, you know, the ones that the mainstream media refuses to acknowledge or cover. The ones where Planned Parenthood folks were pimping out women and encouraging them to get partial birth abortions. So yeah, I guess we’ll disagree on Planned Parenthood.

    “But I think that we both can agree that abortion as an issue is a distractor. It’s never going to go away, it will always be legal, regardless of how you and I feel about it, and Planned Parenthood will never go away.”

    If it’s true that “fetuses” are actually people with rights, then the issue isn’t a distraction as much as its a bona fide holocaust. I realize we don’t see eye to eye though.

    Oh, and people who dismiss Cruz are severely underestimating him. I’m not saying that he’s going to be the nominee (I doubt it), but his influence is going to shape the race in a serious way. He’s got just as much experience as Obama had when Obama ran for the presidency. That should give us all pause.

  36. D, if you and your kind so much as get near the Republican Party then I will personally do all that I can to make the Republican Party disappear. Your brand of politics is of absolutely no interest to me and in fact I despise you and all that you stand for as presented here. You have convinced me that fat boy CC is not just wrong for the party, but dangerous. If the Republican party doesn’t pick Rand Paul or Ted Cruz (or someone very like them) this time around, then I will never vote for a Republican (much less a Democrat) ever again and go back to the years I never voted period.

  37. Jettboy: “then I will never vote for a Republican (much less a Democrat) ever again and go back to the years I never voted period.”

    This is what I don’t understand. There are more than two parties out there, and always more than two candidates on the ballot. If people would just vote for the third or fourth guy on the list, we might be able to finally break the stranglehold that the two major parties have on American politics. But instead, people threaten to simply not vote.

  38. Third parties are not even invited to the national debates, they are not included in all sorts of election events, until they reach at least 5% of the national vote. Once that happens — once a third party gets national exposure at the debates — people will finally realize they have more than two options, and I predict it will be devastating on the two existing parties.

  39. Ldsphilosopher (way back): “You can’t have your cake and eat it too. The reason you thought Ron Paul was nuts was because he followed your advice: he didn’t sidestep hard questions, and didn’t act like a politician. He stated his views and answered the questions, and it made him look crazy to a lot of people. People are used to their politicians constantly metering their opinions and only expressing the politically correct, popular stances. Ron Paul did not.”

    You’re assumption that my objection to Ron Paul was his honesty is quite wrong. I loved his honesty. My objections to the elder Paul were certain view points and the fact I personally think the man is just this side of nuts. The fact that he didn’t act like a politician was the only plus in my book. Rand is more in line with me politically, and is nowhere close to nuts (in my opinion). But I really, really dislike how he slithers away from questions. If election day were today, he’d be my guy, but I’d still be really bothered by this behavior.

  40. Just want to toss in my support for 3rd parties. Would love to see them gain some traction. 3rd parties would throw off the evenly divided power struggle that forces all political action to the center.

    It would make a Rand Paul presidency possible, and would also give him power to make reforms, as the other two parties would have their wings clipped when the 3rd party was in power. We would see more wild swings of reform, and Presidents who wield more actual power, as they do in other countries. We could have socialists dramatically expand the welfare state for 4 years, and libertarians completely dismantle it in another 4, and then all over again. Real power in politics! That is what I crave.

    But, enough dreaming. Back to the compromise and stalemates.

  41. Jettboy: “Your brand of politics is of absolutely no interest to me and in fact I despise you and all that you stand for as presented here. ”

    Jettboy, you don’t know D, and you don’t know if you despise her. I would guess that if you knew her personally you would probably like her. It is OK to like people with whom you disagree politically, and in fact I would argue that this is what the Gospel of Jesus Christ calls for.

    I think you might want to clarify to D that you disagree with her politics but do not despise her personally.

    I love you, man, but you gotta think before you write click on that “Post Comment” button.

  42. I don’t like Christie. I think he is rude and very arrogant. I know he is perceived to “get the job” done, and I’m ok with his union busting efforts but the rest of it, not so much. I think the media and the establishment in both parties have done a very good job at marginalizing conservatives and have made us look like wacky Bible thumping bigots, which could not be farther from the truth. As a Conservative I have standards and having standards is ok. As a woman I find abortion disgusting — how can you destroy life? Take responsibility for your body and your sexual behavior. As a wife and mother I support all efforts to preserve the traditional family, because traditional families help to make stronger and better children. As a fiscal conservative I want a government that spends less, goes to war less and follows the Constitution. I’m not opposed to helping those that TRULY need help, but beach bums who game the system, make me mad (If anyone is not familiar with the beach bum –FOX news recently profiled a young man who surfs and lives on food stamps for a living). Following the Constitution and the founders will make the country work again, but I’m also pretty much resigned that the progressives are in charge, they will stay in charge and there is not much I can do about it — because more and more people are happy to be “taken care of” by a big government. I like Rand Paul and Ted Cruz, I don’t believe them to be hateful or crazy or any of the other insults that have been said about them. But I know they get mocked because they threaten the establishment and the power of the government machine. I doubt there will ever be a true Conservative candidate again. If the big money in the GOP is behind Christie, then that’s it. WE all know the GOP’s strategy of “waiting your turn in line”. I’ll probably vote for a libertarian on Constitutional candidate if there is that option, or leave the POTUS spot blank on my next ballot. My own feelings and study on what to do have lead me to the conclusion to just prepare my family temporally and spiritually and ride the storm out.

  43. El Oso said the following way, way up there:

    “As for the Christie versus Hillary comparison, I think that many have forgotten how liberal Hillary really is. There are vast differences. The budget and size and scope of government are two key areas.”

    I don’t disagree that Hillary is a super-liberal. She has gotten “moderate” bona fides because of who she married, but there is no doubt she is a liberal. Thus the 3 percent difference. The true difference of the budget she will approve and get through Congress are about 3 percent different than Christie. She will propose a 10 percent increase in spending and get a six percent increase. Christie will propose a five percent increase and get a three percent increase. Three percent difference. Notice that in both cases the budget — and the deficit — keeps on going up.

    What we need — at the very least — is the Rand Paul budget that would cut every year and balance in 4-5 years. We need a completely different paradigm where we close several federal departments and block grant spending to the states. A Rand Paul administration would not get all of what he proposes, but he could veto spending bills and possibly get *some* of what he proposes. That would be a very nice thing to see indeed.

  44. Geoff, I will go half way and agree that I might not despise her personally and if there was an edit button that would have been changed, but in no way is it just a “disagreement” politically. Liberal positions of the kind she listed makes me very angry and concerned for the health of this nation. That she, or those similar in viewpoint to her, would at least pretend they would support CC only makes me that much more determined he will never get past the first round of the primaries if I can help it.

    LDSP, I tried the third party voting once (although not Pres. ticket) and found it just as much worth as not voting at all. My prediction is that 3rd Party (as has been proven since the start of the United States) will only devistate whatever major party has the closest political leanings. Clinton won and Bush might have lost if it wasn’t for a third party. At best they cause realignments. Right now they can’t even win local elections with smaller voting populations. I love you “third party advocates,” but in the mass communication world we live in, not allowed to debate is the least of your problems. Get out there at the very start and gather a five percent following first. The main problem is not having a televised primary where the real public introductions come from; and in that I have sympathy.

  45. Geoff: First off, thanks. Civility should never be lost, no matter how you feel about something or someone. I’m passionate about some issues too, but I’m respectful of other people’s positions as well.
    I learned a great deal from you in the comments, Geoff.
    Secondly, I think you should start up something like a fantasy league, but for politics.
    Next post, maybe?

  46. Jettboy, if more people (like yourself) did it, that would change. And if you don’t support either major candidate, what do you lose by helping throw a wrench in their campaign? We’re trying to effect social change, and that doesn’t happen so long as either major party maintains dominant control.

  47. Following the Constitution and the founders will make the country work again, but I’m also pretty much resigned that the progressives are in charge, they will stay in charge and there is not much I can do about it — because more and more people are happy to be “taken care of” by a big government.

    Joyce, In the context of this post, I want to push back on the idea that the problem with Republican establishment candidates (like Christie) is that they’re too liberal. Militarism and wasteful global intervention may have had some big help from the Dems of old (Wilson, FDR, Johnson), but let’s not pretend that the Conservative movement has been much opposed in the last 40+ years. And more than that, from Reagan to Bush Jr. they’ve come to own the escalation of the military industrial complex as a point of pride. A better comp for Christie is Reagan , not Obama. (Although Obama is a lot like Reagan too!).

    Also, about “the founders”: They may have had some big moments of unity, but lets not pretend that they all agreed on how to implement of our founding documents. For example, I’m sure Jefferson would be horrified to see the establishment of “Official Religion” in NC. Of course, any Mormon should be too.

  48. Christian J, I agree that “conservatives” share a lot of blame for our current military-industrial complex, but I think a lot of the traditional labels are getting blurry right now regarding the left-right scale. Ted Cruz is speaking out against the inevitable Syrian invasion, and he is probably the most “conservative” member of the Senate. It seems that the country is increasingly divided between the 1)Establishment Dems and Establishment Republicans and 2)everybody else. This is where Christie comes in: he has firmly positioned himself as the Republican Establishment candidate and, therefore, pro-intervention. I think most of us can agree that we need some kind of national defense, but do we need to have hundreds of military bases everywhere and do we need to use our soldiers to help the Syrians solve their own mess? I think not.

    Anti-intervention-everywhere people should unify behind somebody like Rand Paul who might actually be willing to take on the Establishment in both parties. Hillary/Biden/Christie/Bush/Ayotte, etc will just get us more of the same.

  49. Actually, Christian, there are many conservatives, myself included that understand there is a time and place to go to war and fight, however, we do that reluctantly and actually oppose war. I hate that our nation is the world’s policeman. I wish we’d drill for our own oil. so we could just let the Middle East do its own thing. Why are we still in Afghanistan? Was it really a good idea to take out Saddam Hussein, as bad as he was? It sickens me that our President has thrown his support behind the Muslim Brotherhood. who are currently slaughtering Coptic Christians in Egypt, and that he might send more aid to them.

    It’s like I said, we’ve been marginalized or have not had a platform on which to speak. At least Regan understood the difference between good and evil and the importance of freedom of choice and natural rights — something that escapes both Obama and Christie. Regan had integrity, Obama and Christie do not. As far as NC establishing a state religion, that is up to the residents and voters of NC to deal with — as is grated them in the Bill of Rights, Amendment 10.

  50. Amendment Ten? When did we ever pay any attention to that old thing? Didn’t we give that up before the Civil War? The very idea! Don’t you know that the states are just administrative units of the federal government?

    Just this morning I mentioned to my wife that states get a lot of their revenue from the federal government, and to whatever degree the states are subsidizing counties they are sharing in the largess. That means that every homeowner that would otherwise have to pay higher property taxes is indirectly receiving “welfare” from the federal government. We are rapidly becoming an ant hill or bee hive rather than a community of Freemen and individuals. I wonder how it is going to end.

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