Republican Party

Keyes: GOP Can’t Be Trusted Until They Embrace Birtherism

No stranger to hyperbole, Alan Keyes in his latest column for WorldNetDaily suggests that the war between “Obama’s Mao Zedong-style forced march to socialism” and people who “love liberty” comes down to the question of Obama’s eligibility to serve as President. Keyes claims that while the GOP’s sins of massive spending, elitism, and political moderation are bad, their refusal to endorse Birtherism outright is even worse.

According to Keyes, the Republicans in the House can only defend the “constitutional republic” if they ardently contest Obama’s eligibility to serve as President, and assist Lt. Col. Terry Lakin, the Birther soldier who refuses to obey orders from the military and is facing a dishonorable discharge. Keyes writes:

I see little or no evidence that the GOP embraces the forthright and positive commitment to liberty America has and should always represent. I see strong evidence that they do not. The best proof is their cowardly acquiescence in Obama's contemptuous disregard for the authority of the U.S. Constitution, epitomized by his stubborn refusal to do what's necessary to establish that he is in fact constitutionally eligible to hold the office whose perquisites he presently abuses to defend that refusal. Not content with arrogant legal maneuvers, the Obama faction and its fellow travelers are now doing what all those determined to establish tyranny routinely do. They are seeking to destroy, and so make an example of, an honorable individual whose only "crime" is his refusal to join the jackals who are willing to conspire in Obama's overthrow of the Constitution's authority. Lt. Col. Terry Lakin awaits the commencement of the Stalinesque "show trial," a planned and orchestrated travesty of military justice intended to stifle legitimate public doubts by showing what happens to those who have the nerve to insist that politicians and government officials respect the Constitution's prerequisites for the exercise of power.

All the powers that be in the Republican Party have joined in the conspiracy of silence that allows this good man, this decorated officer, this truly courageous patriot, to be persecuted. Many of them and their cohorts in the Republican-leaning media have joined in the insidious effort to demean and silence anyone who articulates the reasonable arguments that prove the rightness of his cause. They have thus tacitly espoused and abetted the poisonous elite intention to establish by this powerful precedent the liberty-killing notion that the winners of any given election thereby gain a license to treat the Constitution's requirements as optional.

Keyes has previously argued that only Birthers are truly loyal to the Constitution and should be allowed to be President. Despite such resentment, there is growing support for Birther ideas within the GOP:

  • Missouri House Majority Leader, Republican State Rep. Timothy W. Jones, is a close ally and partner of “Birther Queen” Orly Taitz, and was “was listed as a plaintiff in a lawsuit filed by lawyer-dentist Taitz to obtain an original birth certificate, immigration records, passports and other vital records from Obama.”
  • Congressman-Elect Tim Walberg (R-MI) claims that the he “really didn’t know” if Obama was a citizen, and that the President “hasn't resolved” the controversy over his eligibility. He suggested that House Republicans should consider impeaching Obama over the matter.
  • Congressman-Elect Steve Pearce (R-NM) agreed with the Birthers arguments for questioning Obama’s citizenship and said that “Barack Obama raised the most significant questions himself.”
  • US Senator David Vitter (R-LA), who just won reelection, said that he supports Birther lawsuits and called them “the valid and most possibly effective grounds” to contest Obama’s eligibility.
  • Roy Blunt (R-MO), the former GOP Minority Whip and now US Senator-Elect, said: “What I don't know is why the president can't produce a birth certificate. I don't know anybody else that can't produce one. And I think that that's a legitimate question -- no health records, no birth certificate.”

Maybe the Republican Party is moving in Keyes’s direction after all.

Meet Lou Barletta: America's Anti-Immigrant Mayor Heads to Congress

Following last Tuesday's election, RWW will bring you our list of the "The Ten Scariest Republicans Heading to Congress." Our sixth candidate profile is on Lou Barletta, America’s anti-immigrant mayor:

Those disappointed to see anti-immigrant zealot Tom Tancredo off the national political stage will find a similar one-issue firebrand in Pennsylvania congressman-elect Lou Barletta.

Barletta rose to national prominence as the mayor of Hazleton, Pennsylvania, a small working class city that in 2006 enacted some of the most draconian anti-immigrant measures in the country. Hazleton’s law put tough penalties on individuals and businesses who knowingly or unknowingly did business with undocumented immigrants—it revoked for five years the business license of any business caught employing an undocumented immigrant, and slapped landlords renting to undocumented immigrants with a $1,000-a-day fine. The law also declared English the official language of Hazleton, and prohibited city officials from translating documents without permission.

When the law passed, Barletta told the Washington Post, “I will get rid of the illegal people. It's this simple: They must leave." On the day the city passed the measure, Barletta wore a bulletproof vest to illustrate his concern over crimes he said were being committed by undocumented immigrants. Statistics, however, showed that undocumented immigrants were hardly responsible for a crime wave in Hazelton: the city’s data showed that of 8,575 felonies committed in the city between 2000 and 2007, 20 had been linked to undocumented immigrants. Later, forced to admit that he had no proof of an illegal immigrant-caused crime wave, or proof that illegal immigrants were crowding Hazleton’s schools and hospitals, or even any idea how many illegal immigrants were in Hazelton, Barletta responded, “The people in my city don’t need numbers.”

After the law took effect, businesses catering to Latino residents that had revitalized Hazleton’s downtown area saw a sharp drop in business, and Latino residents reported increased hostility from white residents.

A federal judge struck down Barletta’s law in 2007, writing, "The genius of our Constitution is that it provides rights even to those who evoke the least sympathy from the general public. Hazleton, in its zeal to control the presence of a group deemed undesirable, violated the rights of such people, as well as others within the community." An appeals court this year upheld the ruling.

Although Barletta claimed to be defending “the legal taxpayer of any race,” he admitted that he found inspiration for the law from the website of self-described “proud nationalist” Jim Turner, who pushed a similar measure in San Bernardino, California to prevent the state from becoming, as he put it, a “Third World Cesspool.”

As copy-cat laws started to pop up in towns around the country, Barletta became a hero to anti-immigrant and nativist groups. When he ran for Congress in 2008, Barletta’s campaign received $10,920 from the Minuteman PAC, the political spending arm of the Minuteman Civil Defense Corps, a vigilante border-patrol group that the Southern Poverty Law Center calls “nativist extremist.” It was the largest donation the Minuteman PAC made to a candidate that year.

In 2009, Barletta drew fire for speaking at a conference hosted by The American Cause, a group that had earlier that year released a report urging the Republican Party to not “pander to pro-amnesty Hispanics and swing voters,” and instead to put anti-immigrant policies at the forefront of the party’s strategy. The report was authored by several anti-immigrant advocates, many who had clear records of dabbling in white supremacy. The executive director of the group, and main author of the report, had even been charged with a hate crime against an African American woman. The immigrants’ rights group America’s Voice described the 2009 conference as “a forum for white nationalists to forge ties with ‘mainstream’ media commentators and conservative leaders.”

Although Barletta frames most of his politics through the lens of illegal immigration, he has also embraced Tea Party talking points on social issues, the environment, and the scope of government. In a candidates’ debate, he said his first action as a member of Congress would be to vote to repeal health care reform. He says the Affordable Care Act brought about “nationalized health care” and said it would put “life-affecting health decisions in the hands of bureaucrats,” and echoed the false claim raised by many in the Tea Party that health care reform “will take $500 billion out of Medicare." He told a forum in Pocono, "We're afraid of our government. We're afraid of what our government is going to do” and claimed on his campaign website that President Obama and Democrats in Congress are “spending our country into servitude.”

In terms of government spending, Barletta took particular issue with the comparatively miniscule $1.1 million that was spent to send members of Congress and their staffers to last year’s climate summit in Copenhagen. He claims to be a climate change skeptic, saying, “You know there's arguments on both sides. I'm not convinced that there's scientific evidence that proves that. I believe there's some that can also argue the opposite.”

When Obama created a panel to distribute recovery funds from BP’s $20 billion escrow account after the Gulf oil spill, Barletta said, “It’s exactly what the people of the Gulf don’t need – more bureaucracy.”

Barletta’s record as mayor of Hazleton doesn’t speak well, however, for his future as a fiscal problem solver: his budget for Hazleton last year hikes taxes and fees, and called for laying off government workers—including a number of police officers. As Barletta leaves office, Hazleton has the highest rate of unemployment in Pennsylvania. Despite raising taxes as Mayor of Hazleton, Barletta has signed Americans for Tax Reform’s pledge to never raise taxes in Washington.

Barletta opposes marriage equality, Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell repeal, and abortion rights. He has also embraced right-wing conspiracy theories about government-run “death panels” and the imminent risk of human cloning, stating on his website, “I will oppose the efforts of some to increase or expand the protection or establishment of legal euthanasia, abortion, and human cloning. As Congress begins to tackle the issues of Medicare and health care reform, I will never support a program that results in rationing of life-saving procedures to those covered under those programs.”

In his predictably hostile response to the planned Islamic community center in lower Manhattan, he advanced the popular right-wing pseudo-historical theory of Muslim “victory mosques.”

While Barletta, it seems, will be a reliable vote for the Republican Party’s far-right wing, he’s already emerging as a leader on anti-immigrant zealotry. Two days after the election, he went on Fox News to accuse Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid of attempting to buy Hispanic votes by introducing the DREAM Act. Watch:
 

 

 

 

 

Fischer Accuses Obama Of "Flipping Off" His Enemies

I don't expect much from the Religious Right ... and I expect even less from the likes of the AFA's Bryan Fischer.  But sometimes I still have to marvel at the conspiracies that he is able to dream up, like his new claim that President Obama has been subtly "flipping off" his enemies:

The president developed a habit during the campaign of subtly flipping people off by scratching his face with his middle finger ... Mr. Obama has been repeatedly videotaped using this form of vulgarity when talking to or about Hillary Clinton or other political enemies. He used the technique to flip off Hillary Clinton, a Hillary Clinton supporter (Mayor John Callahan of Bethelehm, PA), John McCain, and the entire Republican party.

He can, of course, maintain plausible deniability, by saying he was just scratching an itch, but think about it: who naturally scratches his face with his middle finger? Try it yourself, and you’ll see what I mean.

It has happened too often and too strategically to be passed off as simple coincidence. It only seems to happen when he is speaking to or about someone for whom he has particular contempt ...

If this indeed is what is happening, it reveals something dark and thuggish about the president’s character, something far beneath the dignity of the office. The president is beginning to remind me of a juvenile delinquent as much as anything else: immaturity, an absence of moral values, and a perverse delight in destroying things (like the American economy) just for the pleasure of it.

If you are a rational person, you see the President scratching his face at the 2:19 mark - but if you are the the director of Issue Analysis for Government and Public Policy for the American Family Association, you see him giving Jake Tapper "the finger":

Party (Again) At Brent Bozell's House!

Right after the election in 2008, a group of right-wing leaders gathered at Brent Bozell's house to lick their wounds and begin plotting their return.

They are now crediting the meeting with laying the groundwork for the republican gains in the last election and so they are gathering once again to strategize ways to solidify and expand their gains in the next election:

A group of conservative leaders who helped steer their movement away from a painful defeat in 2008 and toward an electoral comeback in 2010, plan to meet privately on Friday to map out their strategy for the next two years.

Led by Brent Bozell, president of the Media Research Center, a conservative media watchdog group, and the nephew of the late conservative icon William F. Buckley, Jr., the gathering will include a who’s who of right-leaning activists.

Joining Bozell at his mountain retreat in Stanley, Va. will be Tony Perkins, president of the Family Research Council; Tim Phillips, president of Americans for Prosperity, one of the most active conservative groups of 2010 election cycle; former Indiana Republican Rep. Dave McIntosh; Becky Norton Dunlop, vice president at the Heritage Foundation; Frank Gaffney, founder and president of the Center for Security Policy; Al Regnery, publisher of the American Spectator magazine; and Leonard Leo, executive vice president of The Federalist Society.

The group includes many of the same individuals who, in the words of one conservative activist, helped define President Barack Obama, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi as “far leftists” who were tipping the country “toward socialism” -- an idea that energized the conservative base this year.

...

Many of the same individuals who will gather at Bozell’s home this week took part in a similar meeting after the 2008 election, not only to lick their wounds after Obama swept into the White House and Democrats scored big gains in Congress, but also to plot a course out of the political wilderness

After that session, Bozell declared “the moderate wing of the Republican Party is dead,” and his counterpart, Tony Perkins, warned that candidates for elected officials who are “squishy on conservative principles” would no longer be tolerated.

Friday’s discussion will focus on the issues that will continue to drive movement supporters, including an emphasis on limited, constitutional government. The group also plans to look ahead to the 2012 election cycle, identifying some of the rising-star candidates who have the best chance to defeat President Obama.

To pass muster among members of this group, the activist who outlined the meeting’s agenda, said potential 2012 candidates will have to be “full-throttle, across-the-board conservatives."

Joseph Farah: Mitt Romney Is Worse Than Satan

The Religious Right is already looking to 2012, and Joseph Farah of WorldNetDaily is heeding the alarm: if Mitt Romney becomes the GOP Presidential nominee, “America’s toast.” Farah believes that due to Romney’s cardinal sins of supporting a health care reform law in Massachusetts and being close to the GOP establishment make him “the most dangerous man in America.” Social conservatives already worked hard in 2008 to make sure that Mitt Romney was not the Republican Party’s nominee for President, let alone John McCain’s choice for Vice President. But Farah’s rhetoric against the former Massachusetts governor demonstrates the heightened fear that Romney will be the frontrunner in the 2012 Republican nomination contest:

Mitt Romney is the most dangerous man in America today because he is the only GOP presidential contender about whom I can make such an unequivocal statement. If he wins, we lose. America's toast.

I'm serious about this.

All the positive energy that was stirred up throughout middle America because of Obama's misdeeds will have nowhere to be channeled if he's the nominee.

Honestly, if he's the nominee, America's only hope will be revolution.



I wouldn't vote for Romney if he ran against Satan himself for president.

He needs to be the one candidate that faithful, liberty-loving Republicans agree can never be the nominee. His track record of flip-flopping on the major issues of the day is a disqualifier. No one is perfect, but Romney is perfectly awful. I would have expected my friend Robert Ringer to notice that.

I am hoping, as we get closer to 2012, that discerning Republicans heed this warning.

I intend to do everything in my power to alert the American electorate to the threat he poses.

This is not hyperbole: Mitt Romney is the most dangerous man in America today.

Brownback Finally Speaks, Claims He Worked With Engle On "Human Rights" Issues

Earlier today we noted that Sam Brownback was refusing to comment on his ties to Lou Engle despite the fact that the two lived together for several months and that he has attended several events with Engle.

Well, it looks like the pressure has started to get to him and so Brownback finally broke his silence today and attempted to distance himself from Engle while claiming that his work with him was all about "human rights":

U.S. Sen. Sam Brownback expressed uneasiness Wednesday with some elements of controversial evangelist Lou Engle's proselytizing.

The Kansas Democratic Party raised questions about ties between the Republican Party's nominee for governor and the minister with headquarters in Kansas City, Mo. Brownback has participated in religious rallies in Tennessee and elsewhere hosted by Engle, who says Christians may need to martyr themselves in the campaign against abortion and homosexuality.

Engle and Brownback were together as recently as December 2009 when they appeared on the Internet broadcast of a prayer service seeking God's intervention to block Senate passage of health reform.

Brownback, interviewed following a TV appearance in Topeka, said Kansas voters should understand he doesn't agree with all positions expressed by Engle.

"He's said things I don't agree with," Brownback said. "I haven't talked to him in months."

Brownback, of Topeka, said he worked with Engle on adoption by the U.S. Senate of official statements of apology to Native Americans and African-Americans. He said the Native American statement became law.

"Those were the substantive items," Brownback said. "It's all been about human rights and helping people live better."

Brownback said any description of his relationship with Engle shouldn't suggest the senator had minimized his views on abortion and gay rights.

"I'm pro-life," Brownback said. "I support marriage as the union between a man and woman and I support the 'don't ask, don't tell' policies."

Please - Engle is know for a lot of things, but his "substantive" concerns about Native Americans, African Americans, and human rights are not at the top of the list. 

He may very well care deeply about such issues, but Engle is not drawing tens of thousands of prayer warriors to day-long fasting and prayer rallies aimed at apologizing to Native Americans - he mobilizes activists to fight abortion and gay marriage.

So let's ask Brownback again just which of Engle's views concern him the most:  Is it his Dominionism? or his view that homosexuality should be criminalized? or his fear that President Obama is unleashing demons upon this nation? or that universities are conditioning students to accept the Mark of the Beast? or maybe that Satan has gained control over the US government?

Pence Embraces Reed and the Religious Right in Iowa

After winning the Values Voter Summit straw poll of likely 2012 presidential contenders, Indiana Congressman Mike Pence spoke in Iowa to Ralph Reed’s Faith & Freedom Coalition. Pence appeared to reject “the truce” proposed by Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels, which called on conservatives to play down social issues in order to push their economic agenda, and showed why he is so beloved by the Religious Right. In his remarks, Pence did discuss fiscal issues, calling for a “balanced federal budget” but also for extending the budget-busting Bush tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans. He went on to link the right wing social agenda of stopping same-sex marriages and Planned Parenthood to the nation’s budgetary issues:

To those who say we should focus on fiscal issues, instead of the right to life, I say ‘what is more fiscally responsible than rolling back this administration’s effort to expand funding for abortion at home and abroad?

What is more fiscally responsible than denying any and all funding to Planned Parenthood of America?

To those who say that marriage doesn’t matter, I say, ‘you would not be able to print enough money in 1,000 years to pay for the government you would need if the traditional family continues to collapse.

We are at our strongest when fiscal and social conservatives are united. Victory comes when we stand together, fighting arm in arm for fiscal responsibility, a strong national defense and traditional moral values.

Men and women, we must demand, here and now, that those who would lead the Republican Party stand for life and traditional marriage without apology.

This is our moment. Now is the time. It’s time for us to do all that we can to preserve what makes this country great.

Men and women of Iowa, the time has come to take our stand. We must not be afraid, and we must fight for what has always been the source of American greatness: our faith in God and our freedom.

And if we hold that banner high, I believe with all my heart the good and great people of this land will rally to our cause. We will win this Congress back in 2010, and we will win this country back in 2012, so help us God.

Right Wing Watch In Focus: "Rogues' Gallery"

Today, People For the American Way released out latest Right Wing Watch In Focus report examining the slate of extremist GOP Senate candidates running for office this year.

Entitled "The Rogues' Gallery: Right-Wing Candidates Have A Dangerous Agenda for America and Could Turn the Senate," the report examines the radical agendas and views held by Joe Miller, Carly Fiorina, Ken Buck, Christine O'Donnell, Marco Rubio, Rand Paul, Roy Blunt, Sharron Angle, Kelly Ayotte, Richard Burr, Rob Portman, Pat Toomey, Mike Lee, Ron Johnson, and Dino Rossi, plus the role that Sen. Jim DeMint has played in dragging the GOP further and further to the right.

Here is the introduction:

Republicans in the U.S. Senate have already broken all records for unprincipled partisan obstructionism, preventing the administration from putting people into key positions in the executive branch, blocking judicial confirmations, and delaying and preventing Congress from dealing with important issues facing the nation, from financial reform to immigration. Now a bumper crop of far-right GOP candidates threatens to turn the "deliberative body"into a haven for extremists who view much of the federal government as unconstitutional and who are itching to shut it down.

Fueled by the unlimited deep pockets of billionaire anti-government ideologues, various Tea Party and corporate-interest groups have poured money into primary elections this year. They and conservative voters angry about the actions of the Obama administration have replaced even very conservative senators and candidates backed by the national Republican establishment with others who embrace a range of radically right-wing views on the Constitution, the role of government, the protection of individual freedoms, and the separation of church and state.

Recently, Religious Right leaders have been grousing that Republican candidates arent talking enough about abortion and same-sex marriage. But this report indicates that anti-gay and anti-choice activists have little to worry about, as the right-wing candidates profiled here share those anti-freedom positions even if theyre talking more about shutting down federal agencies, privatizing Social Security, and eliminating most of the taxes paid by the wealthiest Americans. A number of these candidates oppose legal abortion even in cases of rape or incest.

Sen. Jim DeMint of South Carolina is helping to lead the charge with his Senate Conservatives Fund. DeMint, an absolute favorite of both the Tea Party and Religious Right political movements for his uncompromising extremism on both economic and social issues, is at the far right fringe of the Republican Party and has committed himself to helping elect more like-minded colleagues. Sarah Palin, also popular among both Tea Party and Religious Right activists, has also injected her high-profile name, busy Twitter fingers, and PAC cash into numerous Senate races.

Among the right-wing insurgents who defeated candidates backed by national party leadership are Christine ODonnell of Delaware, Joe Miller of Alaska, Marco Rubio of Florida, Rand Paul of Kentucky, Sharron Angle of Nevada, Ken Buck of Colorado, and Mike Lee of Utah. Others, like Carly Fiorina of California, came through crowded primaries where right-wing leaders split their endorsements, but have now coalesced around her candidacy.

And thanks to the conservative Supreme Courts ruling in the Citizens United case, which said corporations have the same rights as citizens to make independent expenditures in elections, right-wing candidates across the board will be benefitting from a massive infusion of corporate money designed to elect candidates who will oppose governmental efforts to hold them accountable, for example environmental protections and government regulation of the financial industry practices that led the nation into a deep recession.

This In Focus provides an introduction to a select group of right-wing candidates who hope to ride a wave of toxic Tea Party anger into the U.S. Senate. The potential impact of a Senate with even half of these DeMint-Palin acolytes would be devastating to the Senates ability to function and the federal governments ability to protect the safety and well-being of American citizens.

Be sure to read the whole thing.

2012 Candidates Weekly Update 9/28/10

Haley Barbour

2012: Political work profiled by TIME Magazine (TIME, 9/23).

New Hampshire: Stumps with GOP gubernatorial candidate (Nashua Telegraph, 9/28).

Mitch Daniels

2012: Fundraising circuit points to presidential bid (Indianapolis Star, 9/28).

Poll: About 75% of Americans haven’t heard of the Indiana Governor (Journal Gazette, 9/28).

Newt Gingrich

Democrats: Calls Democrats “the food stamp party” (Chicago Sun Times, 9/25).

GOP: How Gingrich transformed the Republican Party (Salon, 9/24).

2010: Approves new “Pledge to America” (Politico, 9/23).

Mike Huckabee

2010: Campaigned with Rand Paul over the weekend (BluegrassPolitics, 9/22).

Health Care: Walks back on previous position on coverage for pre-existing condition (The American Prospect, 9/23).

Business: Huckabee-endorsed Goldline company sued by SEC (ABC, 9/23).

Sarah Palin

2012: New poll shows her growing unpopularity among voters (ThePlumLine, 9/27).

2010: Launches “Take Back the 20” campaign against Democrats who supported Health Care Reform (The Hill, 9/27).

Media:  Claims media "piles on" her endorsed candidates (GOP 12, 9/27).

Religious Right: Article looks into Palin’s relationship with Dominionism (Religion Dispatches, 9/26).

Tim Pawlenty

Foreign Affairs: Calls Iran’s President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad “nutty” (City Pages, 9/24).

New Hampshire: Plans to fundraiser for GOP gubernatorial candidate John Stephen (Concord Monitor, 9/26).

Minnesota: Visits flooded areas of state (WCCO, 9/25).

Mitt Romney

2010: Endorses West Virginia Republicans (The Hill, 9/27).

Obama: Calls Presidency an “abject failure” to New Hampshire GOP (Salt Lake Tribune, 9/26).

Rick Santorum

Media: Santorum, Palin, Gingrich and Huckabee all on Fox payroll (Politico, 9/27).

John Thune

2012: Weekly Standard profiles South Dakota Senator John Thune (Weekly Standard, 10/4).

AFA: Sen. Cornyn Promoting "Men Having Sex With Men" By Attending LCR Fundraiser

Earlier this week we noted how Sen. John Cornyn was coming under attack from the Family Research Council, which was upset that he will be attending a fund-raising event from the Log Cabin Republicans where he will also be receiving an award.

It looks like the outrage among the Religious Right is spreading, as Cornyn is now getting hammered by the American Family Association as well:

Tim Wildmon, president of the American Family Association, said Cornyn’s decision was inexplicable, given the fact that the senator has supported Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell and traditional marriage in the past--and that the Log Cabin Republicans are far from mainstream.

“I don’t buy it, I don’t understand it and I think he’s making a big mistake,” he told CNSNews.com.

“Would he (Cornyn) go speak to a group that was for a 90 percent federal income tax and say, ‘You know, we need to respect their opinions, and I need to speak to them?’” Wildmon asked.

“If it were a fiscal issue in which they were way out of line with the base of the Republican Party, I really don’t think Sen. Cornyn would go speak to that group,” Wildmon said ... “You’re talking about men having sex with men--that’s what you’re promoting when you go there,” Wildmon said. “These people are for same-sex marriage. They're fundamentally opposed to the core of the Republican Party on that one."

Wildmon also said Cornyn should know that he has angered pro-family conservative Republicans to placate homosexual activists.

“This is an affront to pro-family conservatives who make up a large percentage of the Republican Party to appease – I don’t know who," Wildmon told CNSNews.com.

Of course, it doesn't come as much of a surprise to find that the AFA is upset that Cornyn would meet with a gay group considering that they are one of the most militantly hostile anti-gay groups in existence today and daily give a platform to Bryan Fischer to equate gays with terrorists.

Sen. Cornyn To Receive Award From Log Cabin Republicans

Last week we noted that FRC's Tony Perkins had written a letter to Sen. John Cornyn asking him to withdraw from an upcoming fundraising event for the Log Cabin Republicans. 

Perkins said he could understand going to a LCR event in order to have a debate, but never "to a fundraiser to help them raise money to elect candidates who undermine everything we stand for."  But Cornyn is standing by his decision, saying while he doesn't share the group's views on gay issues, he does shares their views on economic issues and it is his job is to work with any group that is willing to play a role in defeating Democrats.

The Religious Right wasn't buying that explanation ... and I assume they will be even more displeased with Cornyn once they realize that, in addition to rasising money for LCR, he will also be receiving an award from them

Log Cabin Republicans will present the Barry Goldwater Award, which recognizes leaders in the Republican Party who have served their nation with distinction in the model of the late Senator Barry Goldwater to:

* Senator John Cornyn (R-TX), Chairman National Republican Senatorial Committee

PFAW’s Letter to NPR

Yesterday, Kyle pointed out Bryan Fischer’s appearance on Morning Edition, where he was billed simply as a representative of the American Family Association. If a respected media outlet like NPR is going to give a platform to someone like Fischer, it needs to make clear the long record of hate speech he brings with him. PFAW President Michael B. Keegan reached out to Alicia Shepard, the NPR Ombudsman with this note:

Dear Ms. Shepard:

I was surprised yesterday to hear the voice of Bryan Fischer, Director of Issue Analysis at the American Family Association, on Morning Edition. I wonder if the show's producers knew of Mr. Fischer's record of extremism and hate speech against Muslim Americans and gays and lesbians.

People For the American Way's RightWingWatch.org blog tracks Fischer in his roll as a blogger and radio host for the AFA, where he makes no attempt to disguise his extremism. Just in the past year, Fischer has:

Yesterday, in response to People For's call that GOP leaders distance themselves from Mr. Fischer, he repeated his comparison of gay men to domestic terrorists. On Tuesday, Mr. Fischer defended his call for deporting Muslim Americans, saying "we are doing them a favor by repatriating them to their homeland where an entire nation shares their values."

Of course, Mr. Fischer has the right to air his opinions, no matter how hurtful. However, he should not be given air time by a nonpartisan news organization without some disclosure of his record of hate speech.

I also hope that Mr. Fischer is not, as Morning Edition implied, representative of the Tea Party movement as a whole.

This weekend, he will be appearing this weekend alongside leaders of the Republican Party, including Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell, Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann, South Carolina Senator Jim DeMint, and 2012 presidential hopefuls Mitt Romney, Mike Huckabee, Newt Gingrich, and Mike Pence. We have alerted these public figures to Mr. Fischer's record and urged them to denounce Fischer's remarks lest they lend credibility to his extremism.

Similarly, I urge NPR to resist lending credibility to an extremist like Fischer by providing him with a national platform without alerting audiences to his record of vocal bigotry.

Thank you for your time,

Michael B. Keegan

President, People For the American Way

 We’ll keep you posted on the response.

Right Wing Leftovers

  • Richard Viguerie gloats that "Republican leaders are in a panic because they have lost control of the Republican Party. Grassroots constitutional conservatives are inside the Citadel, and are poised to take over."
  • Sometimes a title just says it all, like this one from Accuracy In Media: "An Ecofascist Crescent Moon Near Ground Zero."
  • FRC is hosting an event entitled "Is There a War Between Social and Economic Conservatives?" with Ross Douthat, Lawrence Reed and Bob Patterson later this month.
  • The anti-immigration nuts at ALIPAC have endorsed Sharron Angle.
  • Bob Peters of Morality in Media is outraged that TLC is promoting polygamy.
  • Huh? Randall Terry says that blaming him for any deaths that resulted from riots over his destruction of the Quran "is like saying that a woman who is abused by her boyfriend or husband is guilty of bringing violence on herself because she said or did something that irritated him."
  • The band The New Pornographers will no longer be performing at a Christian college because their name is just too racy.

FRC Begs Sen. Cornyn Not To Attend Log Cabin Fundraiser

Peter LaBarbera makes no secret of his views that gays have no place in the conservative movement and the Republican Party and has long waged a campaign against the Log Cabin Republicans and any GOP leader who might even consider meeting with the group - a campaign which continues to this day, as he's currently mad at Sen. John Cornyn for agreeing to attend a fundraiser for the group.

But LaBarbera is not alone, as Ben Smith reports that Tony Perkins has written his own letter [PDF] to Cornyn espressing his "profound disappointment" and asking him to withdraw from the event:

I do, however, want to express my profound disappointment in the fact that you are assisting the very organization that sought this decision from Judge Phillips. You are participating in a fundraiser for the Log Cabin Republican (LCR) organization, the lead group in the law suit (Log Cabin Republicans vs. the United States of America).

How can a group that professes allegiance to the GOP at the same time be committed to using judicial activism to advance its radical social policies even at the risk of undermining the U.S. military and, as a result, national security?

...

In light of all this activity against both Republicans and conservatives, it is deeply troubling to me that you would lend your credibility to this organization. Your work in the U.S. Senate on issues important to the family is well known, as is your close association with Family Research Council and the work we do, which makes the association all the more distressing.

In deference to the work you have done against the debasement of our culture, I would ask respectfully that you withdraw from attending the event. Additionally, I would also like to arrange a meeting so we can both discuss this matter and will have my staff contact yours to do so.

As we've noted before, the Religious Right is losing its fight against gay equality ... and nothing better exemplifies this than the fact that a leading conservative group like FRC has to more or less beg a leading conservative Senator like Cornyn not to "lend your credibility" to a gay conservative group.

Flashback: Paladino says Obama "worships himself"

Last night Carl Paladino, the conservative Tea Party-backed businessman, won the New York GOP's gubernatorial nod by a convincing margin.

Back in August, PFAW Blog reported on Carl Paladino smearing Barack Obama's Christian faith:

Right-wing leaders continue to feed into the increasingly-held belief that Obama is not a committed Christian, a view now held by one-fifth of Americans. From a Republican National Committeewoman to the RNC’s new media director and even Senate GOP Leader Mitch McConnell, the Republican Party has not shied away from feeding into the massive misinformation campaign about Obama’s Christian faith. Glenn Beck, who earlier described the President’s religion as “it's not Muslim, it's not Christian,” claimed on Fox News Sunday that “people aren't recognizing his version of Christianity.”

Now, Carl Paladino, a Republican candidate for governor of New York, flat-out claims in an interview with Capital Tonight that Obama is dishonest about being a Christian, and is deceitful about his faith for political purposes:

Q: You do not believe that the President is a practicing Christian?

CP: No. Not in his heart. I think it’s part of the theater of Mr. Obama. I’m not quite, I’m not saying he’s anything else, but I think Mr. Obama is about himself. I think any religious beliefs that he advocates are part of the theatre to make himself look better to the American people.”

Q: “So, you’re not specifically saying that he is not a Christian. You just don’t believe him when he says he’s a practicing Christian?”

CP: “I don’t believe he… No, I think he worships himself. He’s a very condescending person.”


Paladino’s claim about Obama’s alleged narcissism is extremely close to the description of Obama as “uppity” from conservative figures such as Rush Limbaugh and Rep. Lynn Westmoreland (R-GA). With Republican leaders pushing these smears, is it any wonder why one in three self-defined conservatives believe that Obama is not a Christian?

2012 Candidates Weekly Update

Although there are no announced Republican candidates for President, the race for 2012 is already underway with a number of candidates testing the waters. RightWingWatch will begin bringing you weekly updates on new speeches, events, controversies, and activities of potential 2012 contenders.

Haley Barbour

2012: Claims that his lobbyist experience will help him as President (US News & World Report, 9/14).

Civil-rights: Odd history from Barbour on Ole Miss integration (McClatchy, 9/9)

Mitch Daniels

2012: Meets with GOP fundraisers and “well-connected Republican figures” (Politico, 9/14).

Newt Gingrich

Obama: Claims that Obama represents “Kenyan, anti-colonial” worldview citing a D’Souza article in Forbes which says Obama’s agenda is to fulfill the dreams of his father, whom D’Souza calls a “philandering, inebriated African socialist” (WhoRunsGov, 9/12).

2010: Predicts GOP majority in House and Senate, Reid loss (CNSNews, 9/13).

Government: Floats government shutdown if GOP wins majorities (GOP12, 9/12).

Abortion: Gingrich adviser blames legal abortion for unemployment (RightWingWatch, 9/13).

Education: Scheduled to appear on Rev. Al Sharpton’s new show on education issues (Hollywood Reporter, 9/13).

Mike Huckabee

2010: Fundraises for Rob Portman and Steve Chabot in Ohio (Business Courier, 9/13).

2012: Set to address the Michigan Chamber of Commerce on economy, education, and health care (WLNS, 9/14).

Sarah Palin

2010: Holds fundraiser for Rand Paul in Louisville on Thursday (Kentucky Enquirer, 9/13); records robocalls for two Mama Grizzlies: Christine O’Donnell in Delaware and Kelly Ayotte in New Hampshire before primaries.

GOP: David Plouffe claims “Sarah Palin and Rush Limbaugh and Glenn Beck” lead the Republican Party. “All of these Republican candidates have to pledge allegiance to them, their intolerance and their backwards thinking” (New York Times, 9/13)

Right-wing: Says Statue of Liberty meant to be a “warning” to the US “not to go down the path of other countries that adopted socialist policies” (FireDogLake, 9/13).

Park51: Imam Rauf cites Palin for encouraging a “growing Islamophobia” (NY Daily News, 9/12).

George Pataki

New Hampshire: Tells Bedford audience that “government is intimately involved in creating the problems,” responsible for stoking the economic crisis (Union Leader, 9/13).

Health Care: Writes Op-Ed calling for repeal of Health Care Reform (USA Today, 9/13).

Tim Pawlenty

New Hampshire: Sends six staffers from leadership PAC to the Granite State (AP, 9/14)

Economy: Visits Shanghai World’s Fair, says of China: “They're not racing us to the bottom. They're racing us to the top” (Minnesota Post, 9/13).

Mitt Romney

2010: Fundraiser in the works for GA Senator Johnny Isakson (Atlanta Journal Constitution, 9/13).

Rick Santorum

2012: Calls for infusion of religion into politics, rejects JFK’s 1960 speech defending the separation of church and state (RightWingWatch, 9/13).

Obama: Claims the President is “condescending” to GOP leaders (GOP12, 9/13).

Sheriff Joe To The Rescue!

“Every state needs a least one sheriff like Joe Arpaio,” Sharron Angle told a convention of right-wing bloggers in Las Vegas. And now “Sheriff Joe” of Maricopa County, Arizona, intends to push his hardcore anti-immigrant agenda and promote SB 1070 around the country. After his stint on reality TV with Fox’s “Smile…You’re Under Arrest!” Sheriff Joe is looking to eclipse Tom Tancredo in anti-immigrant politics and demagoguery.

Sheriff Joe will soon address a New Hampshire Republican Party conference and is also slated to speak at the “National Tea Party Unity Convention” in Las Vegas this October. At the Tea Party Convention he will join other right-wing extremists such as Joseph Farah of WorldNetDaily, radio talk show host Neal Boortz, and a whole slew of Tea Party fanatics like William Temple, Victoria Jackson and the rapper “Polatik.”

Increasing his political reach, the Los Angeles Times reports that he is “supporting candidates for Michigan governor, California Assembly and congressional seats in Florida and Missouri, among others.” He recently gave his blessing to Tea Party darling Sharron Angle, who will join Sheriff Joe at the Tea Party Convention, although he later admitted: “I don't know too much about her.”

Famous for building “tent cities” for inmates, racial profiling, sweeps and raids of immigrant communities, and glaring civil rights abuses, Sheriff Joe is now an important endorsement for right-wing candidates outside of Arizona. Politics is not unfamiliar to Sheriff Joe, who launched investigations against critical journalists and political opponents, and was blasted for using the law as “a personal tool to target political enemies or avenge perceived wrongs.”

The New York Times in 2009 detailed the Republican Party’s new anti-immigrant hero and his failed record as Sheriff:

Maricopa County has many times more federal prison condition lawsuits than New York City, Los Angeles, Chicago and Houston combined. In September of last year, the National Commission on Correctional Health Care revoked its accreditation of the jails Sheriff Arpaio runs on the grounds of failure to provide adequate health care for inmates.

In October, a federal judge ruled that Sheriff Arpaio’s department had violated the Constitution by depriving inmates of medical care, fed them unhealthy food and housed them in unsanitary conditions.

The Goldwater report suggested that the picture beyond corrections was equally grim, citing the department’s tendency to “clear” cases without any resolution or arrest, and suggested that resources were being diverted to efforts to find illegal immigrants through sweeps that other departments characterized as dangerous.

As a result of the raids, Phoenix’s mayor, Phil Gordon, wrote a letter to the United States Department of Justice accusing Mr. Arpaio of “a pattern and practice of conduct that includes discriminatory harassment, improper stops, searches and arrests.”


The Goldwater report suggests that the trade-off for the letting [sic] the sheriff do his thing may not benefit his constituents. Although his department was “adept at self-promotion and is an unquestionably ‘tough’ law-enforcement agency, under its watch violent crime rates recently have soared, both in absolute terms and relative to other jurisdictions.”

Homicides in the county were up 167 percent in the three-year period ending in 2007 and the report stated that the budget for the department, excluding corrections, had doubled since 2001.

“We have 40,000 unserved felony warrants — murderers and rapists — and instead of serving those warrants, we have this buffoon who spends his time popping out from behind curtains for a reality television show,” said Michael C. Manning, a Phoenix lawyer who has sued the department on behalf of clients repeatedly and successfully in wrongful death suits. “He continues to demean our community by chasing publicity and acting the buffoon.”

Authors of Manhattan Declaration Put Pressure On GOP

The other day we noted how the Religious Right was beginning to grow alarmed at the possibility that Republicans were going to focus solely on economic issues as they set out their electoral strategy and governing agenda, ignoring things like abortion and marriage because, as Haley Barbour says, talking about social issues just means the GOP is "using up valuable time and resources that can be used to talk to people about what they care about."

Well, the fear appears to be quite real, prompting the architects of the Manhattan Declaration to send out an email warning that "some high-profile conservative leaders have in recent weeks weakened their support of traditional marriage" and urging activists to contact Republican leaders and demand that they refuse to "backtrack on the Republican Party's commitment to life, liberty, and traditional marriage":

We have just learned that the Republican congressional leadership--feeling supremely confident that they can win back Congress campaigning only on economic issues--seems poised to promote a mid-term election agenda that does not even mention the party's historical commitment to life, marriage, and religious liberty.

The Manhattan declaration is a non-partisan movement of Christians from all denominations and political persuasions. Our fidelity to Scripture, however, compels us to speak on public issues which affect our most fundamental moral commitments--as well as the common good of our nation.

We long for the day when both of our great political parties embrace a culture of life, a defense of the traditional family, and a commitment to religious liberty. For the one party which has in recent years officially supported these issues to now retreat would be a dreadful and highly symbolic act.

So we urge you in the strongest terms possible to talk to or e-mail your congressmen and senators, Democrat and Republican alike, urging them to support the Manhattan Declaration.

We also ask you to e-mail the offices of Republican House leader John Boehner and Republican Whip Eric Cantor urging them not to backtrack on the Republican Party's commitment to life, liberty, and traditional marriage. Or you can call Rep. Boehner's office at (202) 225-4000, or Rep. Cantor's office at (202) 225-0197.

Some high-profile conservative leaders have in recent weeks weakened their support of traditional marriage. We know the supporters of so-called gay "marriage" are well-financed and aggressive. But this struggle within the Republican Party tells us we've got to do a better job of making our case.

Use the arguments so well articulated in the Manhattan Declaration. And remember, your job is not just to sign a statement or even get others to do so, important as that is; it is for you to become an advocate.

This alarming news has been verified to be true. But if you act right now, we believe there is a good chance that the Republican Party will stand by its principled positions.

God bless you, and continue to follow the Manhattan Declaration website for reports on this issue and other resources.

Respectfully,

Chuck Colson
Dr. Robert George
Dr. Timothy George

Corporate Interests Betting Big on the GOP

Two separate reports have revealed the flood of corporate dollars buttressing the Republican Party’s push to retake the House and Senate this November. Big business, whether rewarding Republican endeavors to block progressive legislation such as Wall Street reform or simply expecting a GOP wave, has ramped up efforts to support Republican politicians and expenditure committees.

According to the Center for Responsive Politics, “in both the first and second quarters of this year, the broad finance, insurance and real estate sector has favored Republican candidates and committees in its political giving.” Their study indicates “an increased frustration with congressional Democrats by Wall Street interests, many of which are still smarting from passage of federal financial reforms they consider onerous.” Of the 25 leading recipients of money from the three industries, 17 were Republican candidates, and the top 5 includes: “Ohio’s Rob Portman ($820,000); Pennsylvania’s Pat Toomey ($728,000); California’s Carly Fiorina ($650,000); Illinois’ Mark Kirk ($618,000) and Florida’s Marco Rubio ($613,000).”

Stewart Powell and Yang Wang in the Houston Chronicle describe the intense efforts of the National Republican Senatorial Committee to recruit donors from the corporate world. Senator John Cornyn of Texas, the head of the NRSC, “has aggressively courted business executives who are disappointed in Obama’s performance and unhappy with the Democratic Congress' legislative agenda.” The NRSC has raked in over $4.4 million from interests related to the security and investment industries, and Goldman Sachs alone “boosted donations to the NRSC by almost 200 percent.”  And with the increasing number of "Super PACs" after Citizens United, corporations have more opportunities than ever to back their preferred candidates.

Republicans in Congress are reaping the benefits of their unfailing defense of corporate interests, as seen when GOP leaders even went out of their way to protect British Petroleum after the Gulf oil spill. With Wall Street’s unfettered access to John Boehner and Mitch McConnell, the prospect of Republican majorities is motivating more and more giving to the Republican cause.

Religious Right Demands Inclusion in GOP Agenda

Earlier this year, House Republicans launched a website called "America Speaking Out," which allowed Americans to "share their priorities and ideas for a national policy agenda" that they wanted Congress to focus on.

In a few weeks, House GOP leaders are expected to roll out set of guiding principles and agenda that is based on the suggestions they have received and reportedly distributed a 22-page draft packet to members earlier this month.  And the draft focuses largely on issues related to jobs, spending, health care, and the economy while almost entirely ignoring social issues ... which, of course, is not sitting well with the Religious Right:

Today, the Susan B. Anthony List announced the launch of its “Life Speaking Out Campaign” aimed at encouraging House GOP leadership to make protecting women and the unborn a priority in its legislative blueprint expected after Labor Day. The campaign includes a website for pro-life activists to lobby House GOP leadership (www.LifeSpeakingOut.com) and an encouraging letter to leadership signed by SBA List President Marjorie Dannenfelser.

“The Republican Party must show what it is made of this time around. They can do so by acting on their convictions and those of their party, and by making a commitment to passage of common-sense, life-saving legislation,” said Dannenfelser. “Missing from the GOP’s original Contract in 1994 was any emphasis on policies protecting the unborn. Pro-life legislation was not made a priority in the following Congress. With the support of a vibrant pro-life movement that understands the urgency of addressing the tragedy of nearly 4,000 abortions per day coupled with the vast majority of Americans who support a commonsense pro-life agenda, enacting that agenda would not require a heavy lift ... It would be an electorally costly mistake for the future for the GOP to write off one leg of the three-legged stool of Ronald Reagan conservatism. Real leaders multi-task. The strongly pro-life GOP leadership should be able to respond to the economic crisis and enact pro-life legislation,” Dannenfelser said.

Expect to see more of this, as other Religious Right groups started demanding that things like support for "traditional marriage" and religious freedom also be explicitly included in any GOP governing agenda.

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Republican Party Posts Archive

Peter Montgomery, Friday 07/11/2014, 9:50am
We’ve been reporting on the candidacy of Michael Peroutka, the 2004 presidential nominee for the U.S. Constitution Party and now the apparent GOP nominee for a county council seat in Anne Arundel, Maryland.  It is frankly hard to imagine a more extremist candidate for public office.   He is a radical Christian Reconstructionist and southern secessionist who argues that the Maryland General Assembly is “no longer a valid legislative body” because it has passed laws he thinks are violations of “God’s law.” He... MORE >
Peter Montgomery, Thursday 06/26/2014, 5:27pm
It’s not completely clear why Ralph Reed’s Faith and Freedom Coalition, which he created in the wake of Obama’s election, has decided to hold an annual conference in Washington, D.C.  After all, the conservative Christian voters his group works to identify and mobilize already have the Values Voter Summit, the much larger fall event sponsored by the Family Research Council and a gaggle of other right-wing groups. One reason may be for the once-disgraced Reed to show off his political access: last week’s Road to Majority conference was thick with Republican... MORE >
Peter Montgomery, Wednesday 06/25/2014, 10:50am
Far from the spotlight of Thad Cochran’s surprise defeat of his Tea Party challenger in Mississippi, radical Christian Reconstructionist and southern secessionist Michael Peroutka has apparently won the Republican primary for a county council seat in Maryland’s Anne Arundel County. As of early this morning, with all precincts reporting, the largely self-financing Peroutka had a 36-vote lead over his closest competitor in a five-way primary. But absentee ballots are still being counted, so Anne Arundel County voters could yet be spared a Peroutka general election candidacy. We have... MORE >
Peter Montgomery, Tuesday 06/24/2014, 4:52pm
North Carolina Lt. Gov. Dan Forest followed Texas Lt. Gov. candidate Dan Patrick to the microphone at the Faith and Freedom Coalition’s 2014 Road to Majority conference. Forest joked about following another “Lieutenant Dan” and said he’d been backstage crossing things out because Patrick was already saying them. Indeed, Forest’s comments about the Constitution being grounded in “biblical truth” echoed Patrick’s Christian-nation address. “My friends,” Forest said, “America is at a great crossroads where it must decide for or... MORE >
Peter Montgomery, Monday 06/23/2014, 3:39pm
Texas State Sen. Dan Patrick, the GOP nominee for Lt. Governor, addressed Friday night’s session of the Faith and Freedom Coalition’s Road to Majority conference. Patrick said that America is a Christian nation, that politics is about building God’s kingdom, and that America’s policies must be grounded in the Bible. Excerpts from Dan Patrick's remarks: Patrick portrayed his resounding come-from-behind victory over incumbent David Dewhurst as God’s will. He said he started every campaign appearance by saying, “’I’m a Christian first, I... MORE >
Peter Montgomery, Wednesday 07/17/2013, 11:02am
Senators and presidential hopefuls Rand Paul and Ted Cruz will head to Iowa this week as featured speakers at a closed-door event for conservative pastors that has been organized by David Lane, an anti-gay, anti-choice, anti-Mormon, Christian-nation absolutist who has declared war, not only on secularism and separation of church and state, but also on establishment Republicans who don’t embrace his vision of an America in which the Bible serves as “the principle textbook” for public education and a “Christian culture” has been “re-established.” He... MORE >
Peter Montgomery, Thursday 06/20/2013, 2:48pm
Here’s a question for Ralph Reed and the ‘Teavangelical’ wing of the conservative movement: how can you portray yourselves as serious about governing when the keynote speakers at last week’s “Road to Majority” conference were Donald Trump and Sarah Palin? Palin’s conference-closing remarks on Saturday featured a breathtakingly offensive joke about the Syrian civil war, which has taken an estimated 100,000 lives. She said we should just “let Allah sort it out.” Palin also had choice words for the bipartisan immigration reform bill moving... MORE >
Peter Montgomery, Tuesday 08/21/2012, 6:44pm
The Republican Party’s platform committee spent the day addressing amendments to sections of the platform draft that came up through subcommittees.  It seems that the DC delegation had managed to get into the draft platform some vague language supporting improved representation. It didn’t last.  The language said that while the Party is opposed to statehood, there could be constructive alternative means of representation that should be considered.  Even that was too much.  James Bopp, delegate from Indiana, dripping contempt for DC, called for that to be hacked... MORE >