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Saturday, January 12, 2008
Review of Mike Huckabee & Wayne Dumond Issue
All parties, especially Former Gov. Huckabee, "parole" board members, and victums of Wayne Dumond, referenced in the below article or its sources are invited to submit comments related to the facts and information referenced in the article. The ARRA News Service has until not reported on former Gov. Mike Huckabee -Dumond issue. Most Arkansans, especially Republicans, have previously accepted Huckabee's position that he regretted Dumond's subsequent actions and that he (Huckabee) was not involved in Dumond's release. Most of us went about our business and many had not read Murray Waas' 2002 prize-winning investigative reportabout then Gov. Mike Huckabee actions to win Dumond's freedom. Regretfully, political expediency and wishing for the issue of Wayne Dumond to be over (he died in prison Aug 30, 2005), led most of us to close the book on the Dumond issue. We never dreamed that Huckabee would run for president and as a result, re-open this ugly issue. We expect that if Huckabee were to win the Republican nomination, the Democrats will address this issue. Therefore, it now needs to be fully addressed.
The victims of Wayne Dumond and others have called attention to former Gov. Huckabee's involvement with Dumond. We are sure Huckabee wishes that he and his staff had never gotten involved in the Dumond case. There was absolutely no need for Huckabee to get involved. Thus his actions now force the public's to question why did he get involved, what caused him to intervene and risk his political career for a rapist, and why did he dispute Dumond's rape victim account of the rape? Dumond had a previous history of sexual abuse before arriving in Arkansas and eventually being sent to prison for a rape. After his early release, he went on to rape and murder again.
Obviously, the victim's of Dumond are not supporters of Mike Huckabee. It would nice if we could write this off as a mistake by a new Governor if it were not for the fact that reports by Post Prison Transfer (Parole) Board members in 2002 relate that Huckabee pressured them for the release of Dumond. Also, there was a fellow Baptist minister who campaigned for Dumond's release. Finally, we wonder how Huckabee could have shown compassion for a rapist while evidencing no compassion for the victim who was raped by denying to her that she was raped by Dumond because of new DNA evidence which proved to be nonexistent.
Both previously and now as a presidential candidate, Huckabee has said that it was the "Parole" Board who released Dumond. This is correct - But, Huckabee does not relate that he met with the Board behind closed doors. According to statements by four board members, Huckabee made it clear he wanted Dumond released. Huckabee and his staff members pushed through the parole. After his release, Dumond again raped and this time murdered Carole Sue Shields. Also, Missouri identified Dumond was suspected in another rape and murder. The above facts are identified in the below referenced investigative report.
This month an ad depicted in the below video called attention to the Huckabee's involvement in Dumond. Following is the video:
Living in Arkansas with the Clinton administration, we came to expect tawdry items and questionable actions. We experienced Governor Tucker going to prison. Now, if even half of the referenced items in the following report are true about former Gov. Huckabee's actions in the Dumond case, we are most disappointed and saddened that our former governor, a Baptist Minister, could have both been involved in the release of rapist and murderer and then has depicted that he was "not" involved. The follow excerpts are from a recent Arkansas Times article: Dumond case revisited - A reminder of Huckabee's role in his freedom. It presents the award winning investigative report by Murray S. Waas. Waas' report was nominated for Pulitzer Prize. Note: Murray's investigative report was written five years before Huckabee decided to run for President and thus the quotes of the people involved were made long before Hucakbee became a presidential candidate.
New sources, including an advisor to Gov. Mike Huckabee, have told the Arkansas Times that Huckabee and a senior member of his staff exerted behind-the-scenes influence to bring about the parole of rapist Wayne Dumond . . . shows the extent to which Huckabee and a key aide were involved in the process to win Dumond’s release. It was a process marked by deviation from accepted parole practice and direct personal lobbying by the governor, in an apparently illegal and unrecorded closed-door meeting with the parole board (. . .Post Prison Transfer Board. . .). After Huckabee told the board, in executive session, that he believed Dumond got a “raw deal,” according to a board member who was there, and supported his release, board chairman Leroy Brownlee personally paved the way for Dumond’s release, according to board records and former members.
The Times has also learned that:
• Ermer Pondexter, a former member of the Post Prison Transfer Board, says she was persuaded by the parole board chairman Brownlee to vote for Dumond’s release and because she knew the governor supported it.
• The board did not allow its recording secretary to attend a closed session with the governor regarding Dumond, nor was the session taped, a departure from custom.
• Board chair Brownlee [2005 note: Brownless has since been reappointed to the Board by Huckabee] personally interviewed Dumond in prison and set in motion the reconsideration of the board’s August 1996 vote to refuse Dumond parole. Normally, inmates must wait a year after a decision for a new hearing. . . .
Four former parole board members have spoken at length to a Times reporter about the Dumond parole. Three of those board members — Ermer Pondexter, Dr. Charles Chastain and Deborah Springer Suttlar — spoke for the record. The fourth only agreed . . . to speak anonymously. A senior state employee who served as an advisor to Huckabee on the Dumond case also spoke on the condition that he be granted anonymity. He provided a detailed account that has been largely corroborated by former and current members of the Post Prison Transfer Board, other Arkansas state officials, court records, Arkansas State Police files, and previously confidential records of the parole board. . . .
“The reason that I voted as I did was because Mr. Brownlee specifically asked me to vote for the parole,” Pondexter said. “I thought that Mr. Brownlee was acting on behalf of the governor, and I was trying to support the chairman of the board, and I was trying to support the governor ... “I signed the [parole] papers because the governor wanted Dumond paroled. I was thinking the governor was working for the best interests of the state. So I signed it.”
Said another former board member: “Anybody has to be really careful in a situation like this. This is a small state, and the governor or his supporters can make life uncomfortable not only for someone with a career in public life, but also in private business.” . . . “For Governor Huckabee to say that he had no influence with the board is something that he knows to be untrue. He came before the board and made his views known that [Dumond] should have been paroled ... “ Suttlar noted that just prior to Huckabee’s appearance before the board the board had voted 4-1 against Dumond’s parole. After Huckabee’s board appearance, her colleagues largely reversed themselves, voting 4-1 for Dumond’s release. . . .
A board member, who only agreed to speak on condition of anonymity, said, “We are not talking rocket science here. The board jobs are known to some degree [to be] political patronage, and they’re not the most difficult jobs for the pay.” Board members currently earn more than $70,000 a year. “And then there’s the most obvious: If the governor likes you, you might get to keep your job.” One board who voted for Dumond, Railey Steele, was reappointed shortly before his vote. Brownlee was reappointed by Huckabee this year. . . .
On Sept. 20, Gov. Huckabee announced his intention to commute Wayne Dumond’s sentence to time served. The governor and his staff were unprepared for the public outcry that followed his announcement that he was likely to free Dumond. . . . Huckabee was then new to his job — he’d been in office only a couple of months — and was fearful of his first stumble, the official said.
In an effort to stem the political fallout, Huckabee and his staff agreed to meet for the first time with Dumond’s victim, Ashley Stevens, her family, and Fletcher Long, the prosecuting attorney who sent Dumond to prison. In interviews, both Walter “Stevie” Stevens, Ashley’s father, and Long both said they came away frustrated that Huckabee knew so few specifics about the case. “He [Huckabee] kept insisting that there was DNA evidence that has since exonerated Dumond, when that very much wasn’t the case,” recalled Long. “No matter that that wasn’t true … we couldn’t seem to say or do anything to disabuse him of that notion.” In fact, there had never been any DNA testing in the Ashley Stevens case. The state official who advised Huckabee on the Dumond case confirmed that the governor knew very little about Ashley Stevens’ case: “I don’t believe that he had access to, or read, the law enforcement records or parole commission’s files — even by then,” the official said. “He already seemed to have made up his mind, and his knowledge of the case appeared to be limited to a large degree as to what people had told him, what Jay Cole had told him, and what he had read in the New York Post.”
Jay Cole, like Huckabee, is a Baptist minister, pastor for the Mission Fellowship Bible Church in Fayetteville and a close friend of the governor and his wife. On the ultra-conservative radio program he hosts, Cole has championed the cause of Wayne Dumond for more than a decade. Cole has repeatedly claimed that Dumond’s various travails are the result of Ashley Stevens’ distant relationship to Bill Clinton. The governor was also apparently relying on information he got from Steve Dunleavy, first as a correspondent for the tabloid television show “A Current Affair” and later as a columnist for the New York Post. Much of what Dunleavy has written about the Dumond saga has been either unverified or is demonstrably untrue. . . . “The problem with the governor is that he listens to Jay Cole and reads Steve Dunleavy and believes them ... without doing other substantative work,” the state official said.
Had Huckabee examined in detail the parole board’s files regarding Dumond, he would have knownDumond had compiled a lengthy criminal resume. In 1972, Dumond was arrested in the beating death of a man in Oklahoma. Dumond was not charged in that case after agreeing to testify for the prosecution against two others. But he admitted on the witness stand that he was among those who struck the murder victim with a claw hammer. In 1973, Dumond was arrested and placed on probation for five years for admitting in Oregon to molesting a teen-age girl in the parking lot of a shopping center. Three years later, according to Arkansas State Police records, Dumond admitted to raping an Arkansas woman. (Dumond later repudiated the confession, saying he was coerced by police.) Dumond was never formally charged in that case; the woman, saying she feared for her life, did not press charges. . . .
Huckabee’s deadline to act on Dumond’s commutation was Jan. 20, 1997. Four days earlier, the parole board freed Dumond instead. What happened to prompt the turn of events? According to the state official who advised Huckabee, the governor found a way to achieve his goal to release Dumond, but with some political cover provided by the parole board. “It would not have necessarily been a vote for parole,” the official said. “I think we would have been grateful for even a close vote.” At the end of the entire process, he says, “we never thought we could extract from the board what we ended up with.”
On Oct. 31, 1996, Huckabee met with the parole board. Huckabee has categorically denied that he supported the Dumond parole during the closed portion of the meeting, but four current and former board members tell the Times that Huckabee in fact did so. The minutes of the Oct. 31, 1996, open meeting provide no detail as to what transpired. The minutes simply state: “Governor Mike Huckabee and the board went into executive session. The board appreciates the governor meeting with them to discuss his and other concerns regarding criminal justice and rehabilitation and sharing his viewpoints on other issues.” Present at the meeting were Brownlee, Chastain, Allen, Pieroni and Suttlar. . . .
“It was thought to be a routine meeting,” Chastain recalled. “Huckabee said, ‘There is this one case I want to talk to you about.’ ” Brownlee then had the board go into executive session, . . . Chastain provided the following account of an exchange with Huckabee. “The governor felt strongly that Dumond had gotten a raw deal,” Chastain recalled. “He said the sentence was awfully excessive for what he did. “I said, ‘Governor, well that happens. When you rape a cheerleader in a small town like that, that’s what is going to happen.’ He responded, ‘Most people don’t get a life sentence plus 20 years.’ I pointed out that his sentence had already been reduced to 39 1/2 years and said, ‘That’s not really out of line at all.’
Most of the other board members remained silent, as he and the governor argued over the issue. “I got the impression that no one wanted to argue with the governor,” Chastain said. Suttlar, Chastain, Pondexter and a fourth board member also question the propriety of the board going into a closed-door session to discuss the issue.
“The board is supposed to be autonomous,” Suttlar asserted. “Whenever we all come together, the public is supposed to be notified by law. And we should have never been in executive session with a governor about anything.” The board’s executive session appears to have been a violation of the state’s Freedom of Information Act, which says state boards may meet privately only for the “specific purpose of considering employment, appointment, promotion, demotion, disciplining or resignation of any public officer or employee.”
. . . Suttlar told the Times that she and other board members did not object to Brownlee taking the board into executive session, and covered for the chairman as well, because they were, for the most part, friends with him, and did not want to embarrass him. “And so when the press called and wanted to know why Mr. Brownlee wanted to go into executive session, we said we didn’t know why,” Suttlar said. “We couldn’t answer that question. What were we going to say? That he was protecting the governor? That’s exactly what it was. The governor started talking about Dumond, so Mr. Brownlee knew that was inappropriate and he went into executive session in order to allow the governor to speak without the press being there.”
. . . Though he’s distancing himself from the accused murderer today, the record has long been clear that Huckabee was an advocate of Dumond’s freedom. On the day of the vote, Huckabee released a statement in support of the board’s action: “I concur with the board’s action and hope the lives of all those involved can move forward. The action of the board accomplishes what I sought to do in considering an earlier request for commutation ... “In light of the action of the board, my original intent to commute the sentence to time served is no longer relevant.”
Huckabee’s office then released a letter to Dumond denying his application for a pardon. “Dear Wayne,” Huckabee wrote, “I have reviewed your applications for executive clemency, specifically a commutation and/or pardon. ... My desire is that you be released from prison. I feel now that parole is the best way for your reintegration into society. ... Therefore, after careful consideration ... I have denied your applications.” Huckabee was able to achieve what he wanted to do in the first place: Release Dumond from prison with no apparent political cost to the governor. The public was told that Dumond was paroled solely due to an autonomous decision by the Post Prison Transfer Board. . . . [Read More]
Tags:Carol Sue Shields, Election 2008, Lois Davidson, Mike Huckabee, Murder, Parole, rape, Wayne Dumond, ARRA News ServiceTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Tony Perkins, Washington Update 1/10/07: For being largely irrelevant, as some pundits claimed, values voters have received an awful lot of attention lately. Pollsters continue to pay the price for underestimating the importance of moral issues at the ballot box. To avoid future embarrassment, many are scrambling to understand the values voter culture so that they can better predict its movements. Yesterday, a new Harris Poll tried to identify what "moral values" actually mean to the voting public. Once again, researchers found that morality does matter to most people (85%) when deciding whom to vote for. Republicans are much more likely (63%) than Democrats (37%) to believe that moral values are important in selecting a candidate. Interestingly, voters seemed to associate that priority with the "personal characteristics" of the candidates rather than their positions on issues. "These findings show that [the media] must be very careful to assume that voters who feel strongly about 'moral values' are primarily concerned with issues such as abortion, homosexuality, gay marriage... or any of the other issues often associated with the Christian Right," the survey concluded. Although the poll was meant to pigeonhole what many consider an enigmatic voting bloc, it proved a larger point. Unlike some Americans, social conservatives believe that personal morality should influence a candidate's public decisions. This is a foreign concept for many in the liberal media who reduce values to a creed of moral relativism that has little or no impact on a person's behavior--let alone a candidate's. Until the media can reconcile its definition of morality with the Truth, this disconnect about values voters is bound to continue. Tags:FRC, Tony Perkins, value votersTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
LifeNews: Hundreds of thousands of pro-life Americans are preparing to head to the nation's capitol to once again express their opposition to abortion in the national March for Life. This month, the nation will mark 35 years of unlimited abortion and tens of millions of unborn children and women killed and injured by them. The march will be held on Tuesday, January 22, the anniversary date of the Supreme Court decisions in Roe v. Wade and Doe v. Bolton . . . [Read More]See also:March for Life websiteTags:abortion, March for Life, pro-lifeTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Human Events: We begin by recalling the profound words of Ronald Reagan at the Conservative Political Action Conference Feb. 15, 1975: “A political party cannot be all things to all people. It must represent certain fundamental beliefs which must not be compromised to political expediency or simply to swell its numbers.” We believed that then, and we believe it now. The issue for us -- and for the conservative community -- boils down to which of the candidates is most representative of the fundamental conservative principles we believe in. The answer is Fred Thompson. . . . [Read More]
Red State: “Ronald Reagan's Favorite Paper Endorses Fred Thompson”
Daily Pundit: “This won’t mean much to the liberal huckleberries of the mainstream media, but in the realm of conservative intellectualism, it’s huge.” Tags:Election 2008, endorsement, Fred Thompson, Human Events, presidential candidateTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Bill Smith, ARRA Editor: In last night's Fox News GOP presidential debate in South Carolina, Fred Thompson hit a political home run. He evidenced what conservatives were hoping and looking for in a candidate. We hope it is not too late in the political series to win the GOP pennant. To quote a few other online sources on his performance:
OTB - James Joyner: "Fred Thompson showed up at last night’s presidential debate enthusiastic, prepared, and seeming to care. If this keeps up, George Mitchell might need to investigate him for use of performance enhancing substances. Mr. Thompson leavened his responses with the kind of one-liners that many supporters had hoped he would use sooner."
Jim Geraghty: “This performance was so commanding, I wanted his last answer to echo back to the lights in the back of the auditorium, blow out all the lamps and spotlights, for the theme to ‘the Natural’ to play, and for him to trot around the stage in slow motion while sparks showered down in the background.”
Andrew Sullivan: “For me, the big news was that Fred Thompson is alive. He came out swinging against Huckabee in ways that frankly surprised me. Funny at times, acerbic at others, he seemed much more comfortable as a campaigner.”
Now see and listen to Fred Thompson for yourself in the following videos:
Fred Thompson: Huckabee your no Ronald Reagan
Fred Thompson Fox Myrtle Beach SC Debate Minutes PT1
Fred Thompson Fox Myrtle Beach SC Debate Minutes PT2
Tags:debate, Election 2008, Fox News, Fred Thompson, GOP, Mike Huckabee, Politics, presidential candidate, South CarolinaTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Planned Parenthood Takes Your Money and Launders it in Filth
Family Research Center Alert: The infamous San Francisco branch of Planned Parenthood is at it again. In recent history they have used taxpayer dollars to produce television ads which mock Christianity and belittle families. These ads demonstrate which side is guilty of judging others and demonizing their opponents. The latest ads from Planned Parenthood Golden Gate are no different. This ad features an extremely effete and ostensibly homosexual man prancing up and down the aisles of an airplane making sure that the passengers have all the condoms and contraceptives they need, "cause we're all about choices." Planned Parenthood receives millions of taxpayer dollars every year to advance an agenda that is anathema to social conservatives and this is how they decide to spend your money! We need to stop publicly subsidizing such partisan and ludicrous advertisements.
Thankfully, Rep. Mike Pence (R-IN, 100% FRCA) is standing up for the American taxpaying family. Rep. Pence has introduced H.R. 4133 which will prohibit any organization that promotes or practices abortions from receiving federal funds, including Planned Parenthood. Please help turn off the spigot of federal money gushing to Planned Parenthood. If they want to run lascivious advertisements they can do it then without an "in-kind" contribution from the American taxpayer. Contact your representatives and tell them to support H.R. 4133! Tags:increased taxes, Planned Parenthood, San Francisco, US HouseTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
The numerous out-of-town journalists who've dropped in have focused their on-the-ground assessments, justifiably so, on Huckabee's commutations, lavish gifts and scheme to supplement his income with money from a tobacco lobbyist. The conservative press continues to suffer apoplectic shock trying to figure out how the party of Reagan could possibly nominate a candidate whose populist rhetoric sounds more like John Edwards than the Gipper.)
In July of 1996, Huckabee entered the governor's office with high expectations. Arkansas had missed out on the rest of the South's Republican realignment during the 1980s. Republicans here thought Huckabee would lead their party into the political promised land. And why not? Most of Bill Clinton's political machine had moved to Washington. Of those who remained in Arkansas, politics took a back seat to more pressing matters. Special Prosecutor Ken Starr was busy investigating Whitewater and had accumulated an impressive list of convictions, which included the sitting Democratic Gov. Jim Guy Tucker. Of course the 1996 elections were said to have ushered in a new Republican era. Win Rockefeller was elected lieutenant governor, U.S. Rep. Tim Hutchinson was headed to the U.S. Senate (a first since Reconstruction), the 3rd and 4th District Congressional seats were Republican and the GOP increased its seat count in the state Legislature.
But Huckabee's relationship with the party faithful got off to a rocky start when he retained high-profile agency heads who worked in the Clinton and Tucker administrations. Despite cutting taxes in his first legislative session, Huckabee also embraced the ARKids First program, which was then the cornerstone of an agenda pushed by an advocacy group started years earlier by Hillary Clinton. Even then, some were concerned that Huckabee's conservative instincts didn't stretch beyond social issues. . . .
In 2000, Huckabee insisted on controlling the state party's separate Victory Committee, but the committee's finances were so poorly handled that a Federal Election Commission investigation resulted in the largest fine ever handed down by the FEC to a state party. That same year Republican Rep. Jay Dickey lost the 4th District seat he'd held for eight years.
In 2001, when conservative Republican lawmakers opposed a higher sales taxes and fees the governor supported, he began calling them "Shiites." Huckabee's positions on fiscal policy became indistinguishable from Democrats' positions. A year later, he openly campaigned against a ballot initiative to remove the sales tax on food and medicine. While he and Rockefeller won re-election in 2002, Sen. Tim Hutchinson didn't.
In 2003, Huckabee not only begged lawmakers for new taxesto make up a budget shortfall, but he rebuffed conservatives' (Republicans and a couple of Democrats) plan to cover the shortfall by tapping one-time money and cutting pork. In 2004, President Bush won re-election, but Huckabee campaigned for some Democrats - even some who had Republican opponents - and Republicans lost state legislative seats for the first time since 1990.
In 2005, a term-limited Huckabee frustrated conservatives when he pushed a bill to give in-state college tuition and scholarships to the children of illegal immigrants. The next year, Democrats swept Republicans in every race for statewide constitutional office and Republicans lost legislative seats for the second consecutive election cycle.
Shortly after becoming governor in 1996, one of Huckabee's top aides predicted that his boss would do for Arkansas what Gov. Carroll Campbell did for South Carolina, meaning that Arkansas would cast aside its Democratic past and whole-heartedly embrace Republicanism by the time he left office. Yeah ? that didn't happen. Under Huckabee: taxes up, government up, Democrats up and Republicans down. In the end, Republicans may prefer Huckabee keep his vertical politics to himself.
Tags:Arkansas, Election 2008, Mike Huckabee, presidential candidate, RepublicanTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Opponent of Indiana's ID Law Registered in Two States
Fort Wayne Daily News, by Cindy Bevington: On the eve of a hearing before the U.S. Supreme Court, the Indiana Voter ID law has become a story with a twist: One of the individuals used by opponents to the law as an example of how the law hurts older Hoosiers is registered to vote in two states. Faye Buis-Ewing, 72, who has been telling the media she is a 50-year resident of Indiana . . . also claimed two states as her primary residence and received a homestead exemption on her property taxes in both states. . . . Ewing said she and her husband Kenneth “winter in Florida and summer in Indiana.” She admitted to registering to vote in both states, but stressed that she¹s never voted in Florida. She also has a Florida driver’s license, but when she tried to use it as her photo ID in the Indiana elections in November 2006, poll workers wouldn’t accept it. . . Ewing became a sort-of poster child for the opposition when the Indiana League of Women Voters (ILWV) told media that the problems Ewing had voting . . . . But Indiana Republican Secretary of State Todd Rokita said . . . “This shows that the Indiana ID law worked here, which also calls into question why the critics are so vehemently against this law, especially with persons like this, who may not have a legal right to vote in this election,” . . . .
According to . . . Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles, Ewing surrendered her Indiana driver's license in 2000, when she moved to Florida and obtained her Florida license. . . . a driver must have a Florida address to obtain a Florida driver's license. “And if they own property in two states they have to get a license that says ‘valid in Florida only,’” . . . her license is a “regular” one that she uses in both states. She renewed it in 2007 on a Punta Gorda, Fla. address. . . . Ewing registered to vote in Charlotte County on Sept. 18, 2002, and signed an oath that she was a Florida resident and understood that falsifying the voter application was a third-degree felony punishable by prison and a fine up to $5,000. Wharton said her office checked Ewing’s Florida residency and qualified her on Oct. 2, 2002. On Oct. 4, 2002, they mailed her Florida voter card to her, to the West Lafayette, Ind. address that Ewing gave as a mailing address. However, Ewing didn’t vote in Florida that year, nor has she ever voted in Charlotte County . . . But, just a month after receiving her Florida voter card, she did vote in the November 2002 elections in Tippecanoe County, Ind., . . .
Ewing confirmed that she is registered in both states to vote, but at first said the Florida registration came automatically with her driver’s license. She repeatedly denied signing the oath on the Florida application. She also said Indiana mailed her an absentee ballot, but she didn’t use it or vote that year. . . . Ewing voted in Indiana in 2002, 2003 and 2004, before the Indiana ID law took effect in 2005. When informed that the Florida voter office said she’d registered personally in 2002 for a Florida voter card, and that this newspaper had a copy of her application, Ewing said, “Well, why did I do that? I'm confused. I can’t recall.” She reiterated that, even though she’s registered in two states, she only votes in Indiana, adding that she does have a car plated in Florida. That doesn’t satisfy Florida officials. “She can only be registered to vote in the place where she claims residency. . . .You can’t be registered in two states. . . .” Ewing did not inform Florida that she was ever registered to vote anywhere else. “She signed an oath saying she was a qualified elector and a legal resident of Florida,” Wharton said. “And the space where she was supposed to tell us where she was previously registered, she left blank.”
Homestead . . . One requirement in Florida to claim homestead is to show a valid voter ID or sign an affidavit of residency – which she did when she applied for her voter card there. She claimed a homestead exemption on the Florida property in 2003 – the same time she was claiming a homestead exemption on property she owned in Indiana . . . Ewing’s Indiana exemption began in 1994 and ended in 2004, when the exemption was removed because the state discovered she wasn't living there. . . . [Interested in Voter Fraud - Read More] See also: Supreme Court Hears Voter ID Case Arguments Tags:Florida, Indiana, voting, voting fraud, voting rightsTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Tony Perkins, Family Research Council: Fiscal conservatives who have recently signaled they were ready to abandon--if not blow up their compact with--social conservatives, now appear to be in full retreat after their fiscal and defense candidate, Mayor Rudy Giuliani, brought up the rear in the latest GOP primary. In an op-ed on Real Clear Politics, former House Majority Leader Dick Armey now worries that social conservatives who support Mike Huckabee are threatening the "long standing unity" of social, fiscal, and defense conservatives. How is this possible if, as Armey previously suggested, social conservatives and their issues are not important? The coalition only survives if the policy concerns of all three coalition members are given equitable treatment and focus. Clearly the message of Mike Huckabee and his present success have made clear that Republicans can succeed only if social conservatives are a part of the coalition--and they will only be a part of the coalition if their issues are given the priority they deserve.
ARRA Editor: While in the Republican Party the social conservative message is equally important and cannot be ignored, positions that advance fiscal socialism or ignore national security will also lead to failure. Social conservatives cannot assume that economic or pro-national defense conservatives, even if they are also social conservatives, will blindly follow a "social conservative" candidate if that candidate's message or past record appears to ingnore the economic and national defense or even potentially hints as further movements to the "left." Tags:Christian Conservative, conservative, Economic, FRC, National Defense, social conservatives, Tony PerkinsTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
In 2007, federal government's spending -- $2.8 trillion-- equivalent of $22,000 per household. . . . Federal government loses billions every year due to ineffective programs, poor management, waste, and fraud. And, the problem is getting worse. Within five years, federal spending is expected to reach more than $3.2 trillion, or about 20% of our economy; more than half of this amount is mandatory spending for entitlements. Increasing government spending is not the answer . . . time to get it under control with better solutions and better management of our federal government.
Balance the Budget and Eliminate Underperforming Programs
Congress has consistently refused to balance the budget and address the deficit. In fact, federal spending continues to grow at rates double inflation. This rate of growth in federal spending is not sustainable and must be brought under control. The following actions will result in better control of the growth of non-defense discretionary spending:
1. Limit Non-Defense Federal Spending to Inflation.
2. Implement a One-Year Hiring Freeze Pending Completion of Federal Government Strategic Assessment.
3. Conduct a Comprehensive Cost-Benefit Analysis of All Federal Programs.
Enact Meaningful Earmark Reform
1. Provide President with Line-Item Veto Authority.
2. Direct Agencies to Ignore "Soft" Earmarks.
3. Propose Legislation on Earmark Procedures.
Eliminate Improper Government Payments and Prosecute Fraud
1. Eliminate Improper Payments.
2. Increase the Prosecution of Fraud.
3. Hold Executives Accountable.
4. Propose Regulatory Improvement Legislation.
Reform Entitlement Programs
1. Save and Protect Social Security. · Providing Voluntary Personal Retirement "Add-On" Accounts to Supplement Benefits. These accounts would act like a private-sector employer 401 (k) plan and provide government matching funds for every contribution made by the participant. · Indexing the Social Security Benefit Formula for Prices, Not Wages. This action would go a long way toward resolving the impending bankruptcy of Social Security while ensuring fairness by making sure future retirees receive the same amount as current retirees in real terms.
Ensure Future Viability of Medicare and Medicaid. · Provide more choice and efficiencies by introducing new competitive features, similar to the Medicare prescription drug benefit (Part D) and the Medicare Advantage Program (Part C), to all parts of the program. Medicare must be moved away from price controls and government planning to a free-market system in order to reduce costs. · Expand Means-testing of Medicare. Requiring wealthier seniors to pay more through higher premiums, increased co-pays, and higher deductibles is a reasonable and equitable approach that would go a long way to reducing Medicare costs. · Shift Medicare to a prevention and chronic-care management approach. Establish new models of care that make health and wellness a priority so as to reduce the more expensive care that is required once one becomes ill. · Medicaid costs have also been increasing dramatically. Providing tax credits to Medicaid-eligible individuals and families to allow them to purchase private insurance will increase the options for low-income individuals, expand personal choice, and should reduce costs as well. [Read More Detailed Plan] Tags:Economics, Election 2008, federal spending, Fred Thompson, Lowering Taxes, presidential candidate, ReformTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Marriage Amendments Getting Ready to Go on Ballot in Four States
by Peter J. Smith, LifeSiteNews: Constitutional amendments protecting traditional marriage as the union of one man, and one woman may soon be poised to go on the ballot in at least four states in this year's election. CitizenLink reports that voters in Florida, California, Indiana, and Arizona may have the chance to vote on marriage amendments for their state constitutions.
For Arizona, it will mean round two in the battle for marriage, as pro-marriage advocates lost in that state in 2006, gaining only 49% of the vote. That measure, Proposition 107 went beyond banning same-sex "marriage" to ban also legal recognition of pseudo-marriage arrangements, such as civil unions for unwed heterosexual couples or homosexual couples. Polls taken after the amendment's defeatcredited the extra mile to protect marriage for its demise However, according to Mona Passignano, state issues analyst, the language of the first amendment was too complicated. "This session, you're going to see much simpler language for Arizona, and I think it'll definitely help," Passignano said. "The polling numbers coming out of Arizona are very good on the simpler language."
So far twenty-seven US states have amended their constitutions to protect traditional marriage. Marriage advocates in Iowa and Pennsylvania are also working toward putting marriage amendment initiatives on the ballot for a future vote . . . [Read More]
Tags:gay marriage, marriage, marriage amendment, votingTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
by Terence P. Jeffrey, Human Events: Barack Obama is the most pro-abortion presidential candidate ever. He is so pro-abortion he refused as an Illinois state senator to support legislation to protect babies who survived late-term abortions because he did not want to concede -- as he explained in a cold-blooded speech on the Illinois Senate floor -- that these babies, fully outside their mothers' wombs, with their hearts beating and lungs heaving, were in fact "persons."
"Persons," of course, are guaranteed equal protection of the law under the 14th Amendment. In 2004, U.S. Senate-candidate Obama mischaracterized his opposition to this legislation. Now, as a presidential frontrunner, he should be held accountable for what he actually said and did about the Born Alive Infants Bill. . . . [Read More]Tags:abortion, Barack Obama, Democrat, Election 2008, presidential candidate, pro-abortionTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
State Revenues Rise - Time to Cut Remaining Food Tax!
by Jason Wiest, Arkansas News Bureau: State revenues rose 7.6% in December behind increased individual income tax collections brought on by payroll timing shifts, state fiscal officers reported Thursday. Revenues rose despite the bite from halving the state sales tax on groceries this summer. Net available revenues in December totaled $415.2 million, up $29.3 million from December 2006 despite a cut in the state sales tax on groceries, and 13.8% above forecast, the state Department of Finance and Administration reported. Individual income tax collections totaled $222.3 million, up $47.3 million, or 27%, compared to December 2006. Collections were $36.8 million, or 19.8% above forecast.
Sales tax collections fell again in December, down $5.7 million from a year ago, or 3.1%, to $178 million. The Legislature this year approved a 50% reduction in the state sales tax on groceries, from 6% to 3%, beginning July 1. The $121 million tax cut, signed into law by Gov. Mike Beebe, as well as other tax cuts were largely responsible for the decline, the fiscal office said. Sales tax collections exactly matched the department's forecast.
Corporate income tax collections totaled $58.1 million, up $5.8 million, or 11%, compared to last year. Corporate income tax collections were $8.4 million above forecast for a 16.9% increase. Tobacco tax collections rose 3.4% since last year to $11.4 million. From collections since the beginning of the fiscal year July 1, net available revenues total $2.2 billion, $26 million, or 1.2%, higher than by December 2006, and $97.1 million above forecast. [Source]
ARRA Editor: Gov. Mike Beebe should demonstrate additional leadership and propose that the an interim legislature move to repeal the remaining 3% in State sales tax on food. Arkansas does not need to continue to generate surplus tax receipts while ignoring to address a tax issue that places an unnecessary burden on low income individuals and families. We do not NEED to tax the basic necessity of life -- food!Tags:Arkansas, food tax, Mike Beebe, sales tax, tax surplusTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Tony Perkins, Washington Update, FRC: An advanced degree in economics is not necessary to understand the current challenges to America's economy. A simple trip to the gas pump is an education in itself. While oil prices are up the latest employment numbers are down. The Federal Reserve has reduced interest rates three times in the last year in an attempt to prevent the economy from stalling. Before leaving for his Mideast peace pursuit, President Bush acknowledged the economic trouble and said he was considering a stimulus package to jumpstart the economy. The biggest challenge for our economy comes when consumer confidence drops. A proven measure that can help stabilize the economy would be to act now to make permanent President Bush's 2002 tax cuts that eliminated the marriage tax penalty and increased the per child tax credit. While the economy is sputtering the liberal majority on Capitol Hill is counting the new money they will have when the tax breaks for families expire in 2010. Since 2002, when the President's tax relief first kicked in, America has experienced 65 months of uninterrupted growth. If congressional leaders hope to ease this wave of uncertainty, they would be wise to stop fueling it with strategies that increase the tax burden on the American family. Rather than wasting valuable time debating temporary solutions, why not pursue what continues to be the best stimulus for growth--making the President's tax cuts permanent? While liberals argue that the country can't "afford" permanency, America is fast approaching a situation where we can't afford not to have it. For the first time in almost 20 years we have a president who believes that tax cuts and reform are important issues. If now is not the time to enact full and permanent tax relief for families, when is? Tags:Family Research Council, FRC, income tax, tax relief, Tony PerkinsTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Time to answer some misleading attacks on Republicans in Congress
U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), the Senate Republican Leader, responds to a prior editorial in the AC-T. This article was provided to ARRA News Service by Sen. McConnell's office. by Sen. Mitch McConnell, Ashville Citizens Times (AC-T) (1/9/08): While I appreciate the claim in the recent editorial, “Obstructionist Congress is bad government,” (AC-T, Dec. 26), that Republicans in Congress “succeeded spectacularly” at being an effective minority this past year, I must take issue with a statistic used in discussing the practice of filibusters. The claim that “62 pieces of legislation have been blocked by GOP filibusters in the Senate” is inaccurate. This figure seems to have originated in the spin rooms of a certain New York senator and his liberal Washington allies. But just because a political group in Washington said it doesn’t make it so.
A quick review of the facts will help readers see what really happened in the Senate last year. Of the 62 votes on cloture motions in the session that just ended (cloture is used to end debate and move forward on a bill), half were votes where Republicans and Democrats joined together to move the process forward. Four were party-line votes where Democrats voted to block action on a bill. Four were unanimous, bipartisan votes. And two, from early last month, were Democrat filibusters of vital national security law, including a law that lets us monitor terrorists overseas and a bill to deliver funding to our forces in the field. In other words, what liberal interest groups in Washington call Republican obstruction was in many cases a bipartisan effort to move vital legislation; in others, it was Democrats blocking vitally important law.
Voters expect results: Our preference in the minority is always to accomplish things for the American people. The voters who put us in office expect us to do something, to meet in the middle and to solve problems. In the final month of 2006, we actually did a fair bit of it when Democrats finally decided it was time not just to make a point but to make law. After months and months of posturing, they joined us in finding solutions together. And we succeeded on issues ranging from energy to defense.
As Senate Associate Historian Don Ritchie recently told the newspaper Roll Call: “It’s not so much that there’s been more filibusters, there’ve been more cloture motions.” In other words, there have been more attempts by the majority to fast-track legislation — often before it has even been debated before the full Senate. To be fair, some of this year’s cloture votes did involve Republicans “blocking action.” For example, when liberals in Washington tried to raise taxes, my fellow Republicans and I blocked action. When they tried to pull the rug out from under our troops in Iraq, a bipartisan group of us stopped that, too.
Taking on special interests: We also took action when liberals in Washington tried to use an energy bill to raise the price of gasoline and utility rates across the Southeast. And when the Democrat majority in Congress tried to create a permanent, multibillion-dollar tax hike in exchange for a one-year delay in the middle-class tax increase known as the AMT, Republicans said “no.” It is easy to understand the frustration of special-interest groups when they are unable to raise taxes, cut funding for our troops, increase utility rates and make it easier for terrorists to communicate. But that frustration does not excuse misleading and inaccurate attacks by those same groups. As former Sen. Daniel Patrick Moynihan famously said, “We are each entitled to our own opinion, but no one is entitled to his own facts.” Tags:Mitch McConnell, US Congress, US Senate, Democrat attacks, Republicans, To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
In a news conference Deanna Favre announced she will be the starting QB for the Packers this coming Sunday. Deanna asserts that she is qualified to be starting QB because she has spent the past 16 years married to Brett while he played QB for the Packers. During this period of time she became familiar with the definition of a corner blitz, and is now completely comfortable with other terminology of the Packers offense. A survey of Packers fans shows that 50% of those polled supported the move.
Does this sounds idiotic and unbelievable to you? Well, Hillary Clinton makes the same claims as to why she is qualified to be President and 50% of Democrats polled agreed. She has never run a City, County, or State. When told Hillary Clinton has experience because she has 8 years in the white house, Dick Morris stated "so has the pastry chef".
Editor's Note: This above was contributed by one of our readers. Yes, we know it has been around and reported on the Free Republic- as it "rightly" should be. Tags:Election 2008, Hillary Clinton, political humorTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
ARRA Comment: Now what are we going to do with our new toxic bulbs - destroy the water quality with mercury? Maybe we need to rethink this issue!
WorldNetDaily: Less than a month after the U.S. Congress passed an energy bill banning the incandescent light bulb by 2014, the UK Environment Agency issued guidelines calling for evacuation of any room where an energy-saving compact fluorescent light bulb is broken, releasing toxic mercury.
The warning comes a month before the British government begins its phase-out of tungsten bulbs, scheduled to be completed in 2011. The switchover to CFL bulbs will save at least five million tons of carbon dioxide emissions every year, the government said. Health experts warned this week that people with certain skin ailments will suffer from the new eco-friendly bulbs which cause conditions such as eczema to flare up. Additionally, the bulbs have been linked to migraine headaches in some people.
The UK Environment Agency's latest advice focuses on the 6 to 8 milligrams of toxic mercury in each bulb. Users who break a bulb should vacate the room for at least 15 minutes, the new guidelines say. The debris should not be removed with a vacuum cleaner, which could put toxic dust into the air, but with rubber gloves. The broken glass and all residue is to be placed into a sealed plastic bag and taken to a local official recycling site for proper disposal. . . . [Read More] Tags:CFL, bulbs, clean water, environment, fluorescent light, light, mercury, US CongressTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
by Gary Bauer: The polls indicate that many Americans are tired of war and looking for a new president who will rely on "diplomacy." Sadly, no matter who gets elected in November, these Americans will likely be disappointed by a reality of today's world . . . .
It would be wonderful if we could wish away the danger we face. I would love to live in a time when there was no chance of a jihadist detonating a dirty nuclear bomb and taking out an American city, and where U.S. troops could come home and have normal lives. But that is not our world.
The next president may want to bring "change" (Obama's mantra) or may want the U.S. to withdraw from the world (Ron Paul's solution). Other candidates say they are running to revamp health care (Hillary) or tackle corporate greed (Edwards) or revamp the tax code (Huckabee).
But the reality is that they will begin each day in the White House with an overnight "threat assessment" of the dangers facing our country. Then, glibness, sound bites, pollsters and good looks won't matter. All that will matter is whether or not they have the fortitude, strength and foreign policy knowledge to keep Americans alive in an era when thugs are working feverishly on ways to kill us. Tags:Gary Bauer, presidency, threat assessment
Waiting for the next Reagan? Forget it Populism vs. conservatism
Wes Vernon, Renew America Analyst: Many conservatives are disheartened by the choices they perceive in the lineup of Republican presidential candidates. Let's start off with acceptance of the fact that the times and circumstances are different from 1980 when we elected Ronald Reagan.Americans sent Ronald Reagan to the White House because they hungered for a halt to the steady groveling and surrender to the Soviet Union. Americans sent Ronald Reagan to the White House because they hungered for a halt to the "misery index" trio of the doubles: double-digit inflation, double-digit unemployment, and double-digit interest rates. Americans sent Ronald Reagan to the White House because they hungered for a halt to the sixties-induced slide toward a coarsening of the culture.
. . . We are not about to nominate a "perfect" candidate. No such person exists in an imperfect humanity.And let's be honest about this point. Reagan — as great as he was — was not "perfect. . . . Can we all agree that a Reagan will appear just once in most lifetimes, and that even they will not be "99 & 44/100 percent pure," as the old ad used to say? Yes, the Gipper is gone, and we need to "get over it." But conservatism? Those principles are bedrock — from the Founding Fathers to the 21st Century and I dare say, beyond. . .
Populism vs. conservatism: On his Friday radio show, Limbaugh went on one of the most emotional and powerful monologues of his nearly 20-year-long conversation with Middle America. His angst was clearly traceable to deep disappointment over the Huckabee electoral bull's-eye in Iowa; not so much over Huckabee himself as a person, but because the outcome suggested a Republican voter tendency to confuse populism with conservatism, and that conservatives are starting to ape liberals who get up every morning with nothing but pessimism. Rush's long, long lament could easily have been prompted by (among other things) Mike Huckabee's Edwards-like rhetoric against big corporations. Republicans who have complained in the past that President Bush and congressional GOP leaders are not conservative enough now want to turn their problems over to government, Rush complained.
Populism, as defined by America's leading radio host "is a political figure telling you whatever he thinks you want to hear." He added, "Folks, it just scares me, because this is how charlatans get elected." Mike Huckabee and John McCain, according to Limbaugh, "are not consistent principled conservatives."
Do we want to copy Europe? Henry Olsen, Vice President of the American Enterprise Institute, says the Huckabee political model bears some resemblance to the Christian Democratic Parties of such European countries as Germany, Italy, Belgium, and the Netherlands. These are so-called "mainstream conservative" parties — by European standards. Writing in The Wall Street Journal, Olsen points out that Europe's Christian Democrats try to balance the forces of government-provided welfare policies — as advocated by their socialist opponents — with a blend of capitalism. They have accepted high unemployment and high taxation as the prices to be paid for maintaining that balance. Voters should ask themselves if that is what they want here. . . . [Read More] Tags:conservatism, populism, Ronald Reagan, Rush Limbaugh, Wes VernonTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
by Matthew Barakat, AP: The Second Amendment's provisions protecting the right to keep and bear arms apply only to the federal government, not the 50 states and the District of Columbia, lawyers for the nation's capital argued Friday in a written brief to the U.S. Supreme Court. The district is seeking to preserve its three-decade ban on handgun possession after a federal appeals court ruled in March that the ban is an unconstitutional infringement on an individual's right to keep and bear arms . . .
The primary issue is whether the right to keep and bear arms is an individual right or a collective right belonging to state militias. A majority of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia ruled that the founding fathers intended the right apply to individuals and struck down the D.C. law, though it remains in effect while the case is on appeal. The district argues that the Second Amendment protects the right to keep and bear arms only in the context of an organized militia. . . . [Read More]Tags:2nd Amendment, gun rights, US Supreme Court, Washington D.C.To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Bill Smith, ARRA Editor: Even though Duncan Hunter is not in the New Hampshire debates does not mean Reagan conservative Republicans have forgotten him. This weekend, Duncan Hunter's leadership in protecting our borders, fighting Islamic terrorism, supporting our military, addressing illegal immigration problems and promoting pro-life legislation resonated with Nevada conservative republicans.
The Nevada Republican Assembly (NVRA) Endorsing Convention met over the weekend in Reno, Nevada. The NVRA delegates represented the local NVRA chapter members.On Sunday, after five ballot rounds, delegates endorsed Duncan Hunter for the Republican Presidential nomination. To be endorsed a candidate must receive over 66 percent of the delegates votes.
On Saturday, the NVRA also held an open public fund raising straw poll was help. Anyone could come pay their $10 and cast a vote for a Republican presidential candidate. Various campaigns encouraged their members to come and cast a vote in the straw poll. Ron Paul with 44 percent won the straw poll vote.
The NVRA endorsement process on Sunday, could be a picture of what could happen at the 2008 RNC convention. At theIn the initial round of voting delegates cast votes for six republican presidential candidates. By round three, only two candidates remained: Fred Thompson and Duncan Hunter. After continued discussions between delegates and two more rounds of voting by secret ballot, Duncan Hunter received 80 percent of the delegate votes and was thus endorsed by the Nevada Republican Assemblies. The NVRA delegates sent a message that they were not going to be swayed the media or by a populace message.
With daily reports on candidates and their campaigns, most people are unaware that it is not caucuses, primaries or the news media that make the selection of a party's presidential nominee. The selection is made by the party delegates at the respective national party conventions. And in a year with many candidates the convention selection process can be both exciting and complex. Candidates often lacking a majority of delegates and cannot be selected on the first or second round of voting, Aftr these votes, delegates are often released or even opt to vote for whom ever they wish. Then the hard work begin.
Even candidates with less delegates may be put forth as a candidate of choice. A significant historical precedence was at the 1880 Republican National Convention. James A. Garfield was not running for president and attended the convention to support John Sherman for president. With difficulty in determining a candidate, people put forth Garfield and on the 36th ballot Garfield was nominated with virtually all of delegates for two other candidates breaking ranks to vote for the "dark horse" nominee. Some conservatives consider that Rep. Duncan Hunter may become yet another historically selected "dark horse" presidential candidate. Tags:dark horse, Duncan Hunter, Election 2008, James Grafield, Nevada, presidential candidate, Republican, Republican Assembly, straw pollTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Arkansas Voters Did Not Approve of Gov. Huckabee's Gas Tax Hike
by Mortensign, Killbuck Creek Politics:“Huckabee claimed a gasoline tax was only passed after 80 percent of voters approved it. Not true. The tax was enacted before a referendum vote on highway repairs.” (”Huckabee’s Fiscal Record,” Factcheck.org, 11/21/07)
Gov. Huckabee Continues To Falsely Claim That His Gas Tax Increase Was Approved By The Voters: Tonight, Gov. Huckabee Lied Yet Again When He Said The People Of Arkansas Voted For A Gas Tax. “People want roads and the people in my state voted by a 80% margin to vote for the roads and pay 3 cents a gallon for gasoline.” (Fox News, [Unverified Transcript], Republican Presidential Candidate Debate, Manchester, NH, 1/6/08)
On The Campaign Trail, Gov. Huckabee Has Repeatedly Claimed That 80% Of Arkansas Voters Approved A Gas Tax: . . . (NBC’s “Meet The Press,” 12/30/07) . . (Fox News’ “Hannity & Colmes,” 11/15/07) . . . (ABC’s “This Week,” 2/11/07) . . . (C-SPAN’s “Washington Journal,” 12/31/07)
In Fact, Gov. Huckabee’s Own Gubernatorial Website Contradicts The Story He’s Telling Now: In 2005, Gov. Huckabee’s Website Said That The People Did Not Vote For The 1999 Fuel Tax. “The people did not vote on any of the taxes dedicated to repay these bonds. Federal gas and diesel taxes are passed and implemented by Congress, and the state funds to repay these bonds are coming from the diesel tax increase passed and implemented by the state legislature in 1999.” (Gov. Mike Huckabee, “Setting The Record Straight,” Press Release, 11/30/05, Accessed 11/13/07
Gov. Huckabee Has Been Misleading On The Issue: . . . The Bond Proposal (WITH NO GAS TAX) Was Passed 80% To 20%. “Gov. Mike Huckabee’s $575 million bond program to reconstruct the worst stretches of Arkansas interstates over a five-year period appeared headed for an easy victory, 80 percent to 20 percent, becoming the first road bond issue approved since 1949.” (James Jefferson, “Voters Back Huckabee’s Road Plan,” The Commercial Appeal, 6/16/99) . . . [Read All Referenced Comments Ommitted Above]Tags:Arkansas, economy, Election 2008, gas tax, Mike Huckabee, Politics, presidential debateTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Thompson to Media "I Owe the Media Nothing" after spreading false rumor
During the Iowa Caucus, The Politico and other media sources spread the false rumor that Fred Thompson was withdrawing from the GOP race. Robert Novak revealed yesterday that the false rumor was started by the Mitt Romney campaign:
Published reports that Fred Thompson soon will withdraw from the Republican presidential contest and endorse Sen. John McCain have been traced in part to Mitt Romney's campaign, trying to stir up strife between McCain and Thompson.
On this morning's Today, he declined to engage in horse-race speculation about his own prospects, then took the media to task for its propagation of that false rumor about his impending withdrawal.
FRED THOMPSON: I'm not going to engage in that -- further beating the process issue to death. We're talking about the future of our country here and the fact that our worst enemies are trying to get their hands on nuclear weapons and we're bankrupting the next generation. That's what I'm talking about. The rest is all speculation and I don't engage in it. LESTER HOLT: It's a fair point you make; you don't engage in it. But you were the victim of some rumors on this subject of your viability and questions if you would drop out. How much did that hurt you? THOMPSON: Well let's think about that. It did hurt me, and the media lapped it up. It was put out by another campaign; made no sense at all. HOLT: (interrupting) Which campaign? THOMPSON: A few days before the election and made no sense at all, and I was coming strong, and the media took it up, and spread the rumor, and probably cost me two or three points in Iowa. So the lesson there is not, you know, politicians being politicians. The lesson there is that the news media really ought to check these stories out and come to me, and ask me, and take my word for it. HOLT: Senator, fair shot against the news media, but what candidate were you mentioning that put that out there? THOMPSON: I'm not gonna. I owe you nothing, frankly, in that regard and I'm not going to say anything more about it right now. Tags:Accuracy in Media, Election 2008, Fred Thompson, media bias, Mitt RomneyTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
by Phyllis Schlafly, Eagle Forum:U.S. News & World Report, which has made a name for itself by ranking and announcing the Best Colleges every year, is now ranking and listing the Best Careers for young people. A comparison of the latest lists shows a shocking disconnect and makes for dispiriting holiday reading. While the price of a college education has skyrocketed far faster than inflation, many careers for which colleges prepare their graduates are disappearing.
U.S. News' Best Careers guide concludes that "college grads might want to consider blue-collar careers" because B.A. diploma holders "are having trouble finding jobs that require college-graduate skills." Incredibly, U.S. News is telling college graduates to look for jobs that do not require a college diploma. Among the 31 best opportunities for 2008 are the careers of firefighter, hairstylist, cosmetologist, locksmith, and security system technician. Where did the higher-skill jobs go? Both large and small companies are "quietly increasing offshoring efforts." . . . [Read More]Tags:colleges, Eagle Forum, education, new jobs, Phyllis SchlaflyTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Bill Smith, ARRA News Service: Different campaigns last night were posturing as to won last nights ABC New Hampshire GOP debate. Today, over 90% of the press stories focused on the debate being a series of attacks on Mitt Romney. John Dickerson at Slate maybe should get the award for the best title for the debate - "The "Mitt Mall":
It was not the behavior of pygmies trying to tear down Goliath but of hyenas trying to finish off a wounded wildebeest. Many of the barbs were on the topic of Romney's many position changes, his central liability with voters. When Romney said to Mike Huckabee "Don't try to characterize my position," Huckabee shot back: "which one." McCain cracked wise several times most effectively (because it'll be replayed on cable a lot) after Romney gave his pitch that he was the change candidate, McCain smiled and said "Governor Romney, we disagree on a lot of issues, but I agree you are the candidate of change."
Forgetting winners, Ron Paul lost the last night debate. Listeners noticed his comments sounded like a series of prerecorded statements that skipped a track or two on a CD. He has a lot to say and much of his message is of worth hearing. However, his explanations skipped past the viewers. For example, when discussing a question about health care his comments skipped on to a litany about the US involvement in the Middle East and the inflationary effects of paper money. Ron Paul has most likely consider the details of a myriad of issues far most of us. But, last night he needed some Ross Perot charts to keep both himself and viewer on tract. Some claim Paul lives on another planet. No, Ron Paul just wishes to return to a historical period when Americans was less entangled in world affairs and we more individual freedoms. However, that was also before we experience two World Wars.
Numerous sources (to many to list) commented favorably on Fred Thompson:
"I think Fred Thompson had a terrific night." (George Stephanopoulos, ABC)
"Every answer was thoughtful and well-crafted; his tone matched the tone of the question; he wisely refrained from interjecting in the back and forth squabbling. He very deftly reminded viewers that he served on key Senate national security panels and is bringing his experience to bear." (The Atlantic)
"Still, it summed up what is likable about Thompson - direct, clear, and logical." (National Review)
. . . other noteworthy aspects of the debate. The first was the solid performance of Fred Thompson. He was sharp and focused, making his own points effectively as well as sometimes picking apart his opponents’ positions. But Thompson, at one percent in the new poll, wasn’t trying to win over New Hampshire voters. He’s only in New Hampshire because that is where the national press is, and that is where back-to-back Republican debates are being held this weekend. “Forget about New Hampshire,” Thompson aide Karen Hanretty said after the debate. “We’ll get two or three percent in New Hampshire. We have no illusions about that. And a debate, I don’t think, is going to change that.” Indeed, Thompson has no plans to campaign in New Hampshire while he is here, and on Monday, before the voting in New Hampshire, he will head to South Carolina, where he will make the stand that will either make or break his candidacy.
Others have reported that Mike Huckabee, Rudy Giuliani and John McCain had solid performances. Huckabee's usual charm did not do quite as well while sitting at a table. He is much more experienced standing at a podium, in control of his audience and seeking to reveal his position without interruption. If were to win the GOP nomination, his podium experience will do him well. Also, if Barack Obama and Huckabee were to win their respective party's nominations - the final National debates could be very lively.
In summary, Romney received the most focus and time to share or defend his message and thus became the center piece of the New Hampshire ABC GOP debate. Dick Morris, no friend of Mitt Romney, may therefore be right when he said, “I thought that Mitt Romney won the debate.” (Fox News’ “Live,” 1/5/08) Tags:debate, Election 2008, Fred Thompson, GOP, John McCain, Mike Huckabee, Mitt Romney, New Hampshire, Ron PaulTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
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