Newt Gingrich

Right Wing Leftovers

  • FRC hails the Supreme Court for allowing the continued enforcement of Don't Ask, Don't Tell.
  • Ken Cuccinelli says President Obama is worse than King George.
  • Housewives of God.
  • Newt Gingrich says conservatives need to "replace the left."
  • Peter LaBarbera, like David Barton, thinks the government ought to be regulating gay sex.
  • And finally, behold the on-going futility of debating Bryan Fischer:

Garlow: Satan Is Attacking Marriage and Gingrich Is Saving Western Civilization

In my last video of highlights from Cindy Jacobs' "Reformation Day" election prayer event, I included a short clip of a video that Jim Garlow sent to them to be played during the evening because he could not be there in person. 

But I wanted to highlight a few things from Garlow's video separately because he is, in many respects, the linchpin tying self-proclaimed apostles and prophets like Lou Engle and Cindy Jacobs with the more traditional Religious Right leadership like Newt Gingrich and the video he recorded provides a perfect example.

As we've noted several times before, Garlow has deep ties to people like Engle and Jacobs and 7 Mountains Dominionism, which I think is amply demonstrated by the fact that he recorded this video for Jacobs' 7 Mountains-themed "Reformation Day" event because he could not be there in person.

In the first part of the video, he provided this long and rather rambling explanation of why Satan is out to destroy our understanding of marriage:

The attack on marriage is not without careful construction and thought on the part of the secularists. Why would they attack marriage?

Number one, in marriage God says I am going to create you in my image. No male by himself, it's the full image, the full spectrum of God's image. God is neither male or female. God has the strength historically associated with masculinity; God has the tenderness historically associated with femininity and the nurture capabilities. That being the case, God is neither male nor female.

So for us to have the full spectrum of who God is, his characteristics, the result is we have to have male and female come together. As male and female come together as one, they together represent the whole spectrum in the covenant of marriage of the nature of God. When he made us in his image, he made us male and female coming together and there we represent the fullness of the Godhead.

So if I were the enemy I'd want to destroy the definition of marriage so that imagery would be forever destroyed.

We go from Genesis to the end of the book, the Book of Revelation, it says Jesus and the church will get married. That's the final consummating event of all of human history. That is real marriage by the way. You and I have never seen real marriage because that has not occurred. All we have is a facsimile thereof on Eath.

Paul says that's a mystery, we can't understand Jesus and the church coming together. It's a mystery, he says. But to help us understand, God established on the Planet Earth what we call marriage with a small "m." You've never seen Capital M marriage yet, that's yet to occur. Think of the best marriage you know of on Earth and God is so gracious he says I want you to have an appetizer for the main course so I'm going to establish male and female coming together on Earth and the ecstasy and joy that you experience spiritually, physically, and emotionally, that oneness, that's a depiction of what it's going to be like because you can't grasp because it's a mystery what it's like when Jesus and the church come together.

In fact, even the delight of sexual expression, the joy of sexual expression within a covenantal marriage, that is the depiction we find in Psalms where is says at our right hard are pleasures for ever more. The day will come when the church and Jesus are united with great ecstasy and joy. People say why is there no marriage in Heaven? Because there is marriage, real marriage, in Heaven - Jesus and the church. Can't understand it, so they gave us a picture of it Earth.

People say why is there not sexual expression in Heaven? There's the delight and joy equivalency of that as we delight in, literally, the presence of God. It will be an amazing, absolutely amazing moment. That is why we use marital bed language to talk about this, we talk about the consummation of history, the climax of history. Those are languages associated with the marital bed that is now associated with history.

So if I were Satan, if I were the Devil, I'd want to destroy the imagery of male and female coming together with light and joy, covenantal marriage on Eart,h so people would not grasp what it might be like at the End Time, what it will be like when Jesus and the church come together.

And then he went on to explain that he went to work for Newt Gingrich because the entire Gingrich family wakes up every day with a mission of saving Western Civilization:

I serve as Chairman for Renewing America Leadership. It's an organization that was started by Newt Gingrich, it is based in Washington DC. And as I was sorting out whether to accepting the appointment of the Chairmanship, I met with Newt Gingrich's adult daughter who runs his operations. She flew out here along with another of Newt's colleagues and we met with them for hour after hour, people in our church met with them, because I wanted to be sure I did not compromise the Gospel by being involved, I did not compromise my pastoring, and my Christocentricity - my Jesus-centeredness.

And so we met hour after hour and I asked question and question and finally one moment, Kathy Lubbers - that's the daughter of Newt Gingrich - she stopped and she said this: "Let me just explain one thing that will help you understand exactly what we're about. Every morning, we as members of the Gingrich family, the Gingrich organization, get up, look in the mirror and ask ourself one question: what can I do today to save Western Civilization?"

That impacted me when she said that. Here is the question I ask myself and I ask you to ask yourself as I close right now: as you get up every morning, look in the mirror and say "what can I do this day to help establish the Kingdom of God, the rule of Christ Jesus on the hearts of humanity across this nation and around this world?"

Right Wing Leftovers

  • After speaking at Liberty University, Newt Gingrich met with Jim Garlow, Tom Minnery, Craig Parshall, and others.
  • Mike Huckabee has apologized to Karl Rove.
  • Antonin Scalia has no use for those who "reject a priori, with no investigation, the possibility of miracles in general and of Jesus Christ’s resurrection in particular."
  • Is there anything more terrifying than a book entitled "Why Am I Conservative?" aimed at children that contains a foreward by Bryan Fischer?
  • Well, maybe the people who call into Fischer's radio program:

Right Wing Leftovers

  • Here is the text [PDF] of the remarks Newt Gingrich delivered at Liberty University today. It is pretty much what we have come to expect from him.
  • Speaking of ridiculous nonsense, Dinesh D'Souza was on "Wallbuilders Live" today discussing "The Roots of Obama's Rage."
  • Ken Cuccinelli will be joining Brent Bozell, Grover Norquist, Tony Perkins and others for an election night celebration hosted by Richard Viguerie and Morton Blackwell.
  • Day Gardner and the National Pro-Life Union endorse Randall Terry acolyte Missy Smith.
  • Also, support for reproductive choice is proof that the "communist philosophy is still alive today."
  • Oklahoma needs to pass the anti-Sharia initiative because there is a "huge pocket of terrorist organizations operating out of Oklahoma" right now! 
  • Finally, CBN's David Brody has a message for Christians: "Start marching to a tea party near you. There's a seat waiting."  Just keep that in mind next time CNN let's him pose as a "journalist."

Gingrich to Decide On Presidential Run By March

Today Newt Gingrich told reporters that he would decide whether he is going to run for president by March of next year:

Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich said Tuesday morning he'll decide by March whether to jump into an increasingly crowded field of Republican challengers to President Obama in 2012.

In an interview outside Pennsylvania's Republican state headquarters, Gingrich, the architect of the Republicans' 1994 "Contract with America," said he and his wife, Callista, were "doing everything we can" to get the couple's business interests in order so "if we do decide to run, we can do so."

I am guessing that will be among the topic discussed at the private discussion Gingrich is holding tomorrow with a group of "key conservative and evangelical leaders" at Liberty University.  

And I sure hope Gingrich gives David Barton time to get his business interests in order as well, since Gingrich has promised that he'll play a key role in any Gingrich presidential campaign ... presumably on figuring out the best way for the federal government to regulate gay sex.

2012 Candidates Weekly Update 10/26/10

Newt Gingrich

2010: Campaigns with GOP gubernatorial candidate John Kasich in Ohio (Columbus Business First, 10/25).

Iowa: Holds “American Solutions” rally in Sioux City, Iowa (Sioux City Journal, 10/22).

Mike Huckabee

GOP: Defends Christine O’Donnell and hits “elitist” establishment (Raw Story, 10/25).

Religious Right: Sarah Posner looks into Huckabee’s ties to anti-gay groups (Religion Dispatches, 10/25).

Economy: Defends the “Fair Tax” on Fox News (Fox News, 10/25).

Sarah Palin

2010: Slams Lisa Murkowski, lauds Joe Miller, in facebook post (Facebook, 10/25).

Arizona: Sheriff Joe Arpaio presents her “pink underwear” as gift (Washington Independent, 10/25).

2012: New York Magazine says that Palin is gearing up presidential campaign (New York Magazine, 10/24).

Tim Pawlenty

Iowa: Has donated over $114,000 to Iowa Republican candidates (Des Moines Register, 10/26).

2010: Stumps for gubernatorial candidates in eight states before election (CNN, 10/25).

2012: Trails Obama in Minnesota in hypothetical race (GOP12, 10/25).

Mitt Romney

Tea Party: Hopes to pursue economic message with Tea Party activists (WSJ, 10/25).

Fundraising: Mega-donors line up behind Romney (Politico, 10/23).

Rick Santorum

Iowa: Campaigns for a GOP majority in the Iowa State House (KTIV, 10/25).

Religious Right: Speaks to Tennessee Right to Life Convention (Knoxville News, 10/21).

Judges: Joins bus tour with NOM, FRC, others to oppose retention for judges who backed same-sex marriage (On Top, 10/21).

Gingrich Headed to Liberty U To Plot Strategy

It looks like Newt Gingrich will be heading to Liberty University later this week to speak and plot strategy with Jerry Falwell Jr. and other "key conservative and evangelical leaders":

Former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich will speak at Liberty University during the school’s Wednesday convocation, university officials announced Saturday.

Gingrich will deliver remarks on the theme “Rediscovering God in America” at the school’s Vines Center.

Gingrich also addressed Liberty at the school’s 2007 commencement ceremony, just days after founder Rev. Jerry Falwell’s death.

University officials said Saturday that after the address, Gingrich and Chancellor Jerry Falwell Jr. will hold a private discussion with a group of “key conservative and evangelical leaders.”

“This is a critical moment in our nation’s history,” Falwell said in a statement.

“Our republic is in jeopardy, and the only way to save it is a return to the principles upon which this nation was founded … Our founders further believed that God and an adherence by the people to Judeo-Christian values were essential to the survival of our republic.”

2012 Candidates Weekly Update 10/19/10

Haley Barbour

Washington: Ranked #1 of GQ’s “DC Power List” (GQ, 10/18).

Mississippi: NYT columnist looks into his record of pardons as Governor (NYT, 10/15).

GOP: Raises $31 million for Republican Governors Association (WaPo, 10/14).

Mitch Daniels

Economy: Hit by conservatives for floating idea of value added tax (Newsweek, 10/18).

2012: Praised by President of US Chamber of Commerce (Courier & Press, 10/13).

Newt Gingrich

2010: Predicts takeover of House and Senate by GOP (KTAR, 10/18).

Fundraising: His 527, which has no cap on donations, raised over $4 million (Politico, 10/16).

Mike Huckabee

Media: Brings Ohio GOP gubernatorial nominee on TV show, says he is “not the least bit objective” (Media Matters, 10/18).

Crime: Seattle Times looks into Huckabee’s pardon of Maurice Clemmons (Seattle Times, 10/17).

Religious Right: Tells “Freedom, Faith and Family” conference that God guided Founding Fathers, condemns abortion (Winston-Salem Journal, 10/16).

2010: Predicts a “tsunami of change” while campaigning for Indiana Republicans (Indiana News Center, 10/13).

Mitt Romney

2010: Campaigns for Wisconsin’s Scott Walker and Minnesota’s Tom Emmer (GOP12, 10/18).

Fundraising: Collects $1.7 million for leadership PAC over summer (Politico, 10/14).

Iowa: May not focus as much attention on Iowa Caucuses in 2012 as he did in 2008 (Des Moines Register, 10/14).

Sarah Palin

Tea Party: Launches Tea Party Express Bus Tour in Reno, NV (Christian Science Monitor, 10/18).

2010: Set to rally in Florida with Michael Steele and Marco Rubio after appearing with Steele in California (Politico, 10/18).

Religious Right: Speaks to Liberty and Freedom Foundation about patriotism, God, and Pat Tillman; knocks First Lady Michelle Obama (Opposing Views, 10/17).

George Pataki

Health Care: Wants 1 million people to sign his petition to repeal reform law (Jackson Citizen Patriot, 10/14; The Hill, 10/14).

Economy: Criticizes Obama Administration’s green-jobs initiatives (Wall Street Journal, 10/14).

Tim Pawlenty

GOP: Holds rally with Mitt Romney in Minnesota (Star Tribune, 10/18).

Government: Criticizes federal government spending but requests money from Washington for flood aid (Up Take, 10/18).

Fundraising: Leadership PAC raised over half a million dollars over the Summer (AP, 10/14).

Rick Santorum

Abortion: Set to address Tennessee Right to Life’s annual dinner (Knoxville News, 10/17).

Religious Right: Spoke Friday to Cornerstone Action fundraiser (CPR Action, 10/15).

Vander Plaats Tries to Downplay AFA Backing of Iowa For Freedom

Yesterday, religious leaders in Iowa held a press conference to decry the role that the American Family Association in playing in running the Iowa For Freedom effort to remove three Supreme Court justices over their ruling in favor of marriage equality: 

“I believe that as a person of faith I am called on to aide those who are oppressed, abused and bullied — just as Jesus did,” said the Rev. Tom Capo of Peoples Church Unitarian Universalist. “And when I hear any faith-based organization — whether it is called the American Family Association, Iowa for Freedom or IowaPastors.com — that calls basically for revenge against our Iowa Supreme Court justices because these justices made one decision that these groups don’t agree with, a decision to allow one group of people to have the civil rights that they deserve, I wonder if they are considering if they are living loving messages of faith that all the world religious speak of: Do unto others as you would have them do unto you. Love your neighbor as yourself. Help those in need or in pain. Help those who society shuns. These are the messages of my faith.”

The groups aren’t preaching that message, according to Capo, but are attempting to “manipulate us using fear.”

Rabbi Todd Thalblum, leader of Temple Judah in Cedar Rapids, agrees that “the voices of hate are out in force” and encouraged all Americans to return to the country’s “founding principles of equality and respect.”

“We are, each of us, a representation of God on this earth, and this makes us equal,” Thalblum said.

“History has shown us that where ever hate speech has been allowed to fester, violence and aggression are not far behind,” Thalbulum said. “The Jewish people know this all too well as do many, many other minorities both in this country and across the globe. We should never make our decisions based on a rhetoric of hate, rather we should let that what is just and right be our guide.”

Bob Vander Plaats, executive director of Iowa for Freedom, responded by claiming that the AFA was merely one supporter of many:

“The only thing I’m going to denounce is activists judges on the supreme court that’s used to make law, govern law and amend the constitution, and usurp the will of the people, and the will be the message today all the way until November two,” Vander Plaats says.

He says he believes the people of Iowa will have their voice be heard and will vote “No” on the three justices. The Interfaith Alliance says the A-F-A is an “extremist group, with a radical agenda, and a record of hate.” Vander Plaats says the group is one of many supporters of Iowa for Freedom.

He says Newt Gingrich supports the effort, Iowa Congressman Steve King supports the group and Vander Plaats says he’s not going to take credit or responsibility or accountability for any of their comments, nor should they take credit or responsibility or accountability for any of his comments.

But as the Iowa Independent reports, Vander Plaats' claim is complete nonsense: 

But in fact, according to documents filed with the Iowa Ethics and Campaign Disclosure Board, Iowa for Freedom is not a separate entity, but simply the name given to AFA’s Iowa campaign. The group’s attorney told the state, “It is anticipated that all source funds for the Iowa for Freedom will come from AFA directly and that no other individuals or organizations will contribute specifically or directly for the campaign.”

As The Iowa Independent reported Wednesday, AFA has spent about $85,000 in Iowa in hopes of swaying Iowa voters not to retain three state Supreme Court justices that appear on the November ballot. According to Bryan Fischer, AFA’s director of issue analysis for government and public policy, the group will spend $200,000 on the effort.

...

While Vander Plaats downplays AFA’s contribution, AFA has done little, if anything, to hide its involvement with the retention campaign. Each page of the Iowa for Freedom website is marked as being “paid for by AFA Action Inc.,” the political arm of AFA. Advertisements generated by Iowa for Freedom are clearly marked as being “paid for by IowaforFreedom.com, a project of AFA Action Inc.” The West Des Moines address provided below the disclaimer is to a mail box at a UPS Store. In addition, e-mails sent by Vander Plaats on behalf of Iowa for Freedom dating back to August bear a similar disclaimer that the group is a project of the AFA. The website does note that AFA Action is a 501(c)4 organization, and that no contributions are tax-deductible.

Keyes Slams Gingrich, Claims Only Birthers Are Eligible To Be President

Recently, Newt Gingrich dipped his toes into Birther waters by suggesting that it is really President Obama's fault if people think he was born in Kenya or is secretly a Muslim. Gingrich claimed that while he does not believe such things many other people do, and the reason they do is because Obama has failed to quell their fears. 

This is typical Gingrich: playing to the right-wing base by validating extremist claims while simultaneously positioning himself as a reasonable commentator who doesn't necessarily believe such things.

But Alan Keyes is sick of it and absolutely lays into Gingrich and, in doing so, provides a good explanation of the game that Gingrich plays (albeit from a very, very right-wing perspective): 

Gingrich’s remarks are an apt illustration of the main reason why it’s so difficult to have confidence in Republican leaders like him. It’s too obvious that everything they do and say is motivated by partisan calculation rather than by any sincere concern for the integrity of the Constitution and the liberty it is supposed to establish. In this instance, for example, by saying that he believes that Obama was absolutely born in the United States Gingrich dutifully aligns himself with the elite party line. He then seeks to pander to the persistent and still growing number of Americans who have reasonable doubts about Obama’s background. But Gingrich does not treat those doubts as reasonable. Instead he ascribes them to fear and anxiety. In this way, as a mouse skillfully maneuvers to pinch the cheese without springing the trap, Gingrich poses as someone who understands and sympathizes with those who have these doubts. Meanwhile, by contemptuously ascribing those doubts to irrational passions he makes shift to avoid the brickbats of his elitist buddies. Unfortunately for him this cleverly calculated pose of sympathy is not only transparently insincere, it invites us to task Gingrich with the same deficiency he pretends to see in Obama. Gingrich needs to figure out why it is that so many people remain unconvinced of facts he absolutely believes, absent any absolutely believable evidence as to their truth. He needs to figure out why it is that despite the best efforts of cleverly superior elites such as himself many people insist on applying their own common sense.

Of course, this being Keyes, he concludes by proclaiming that since Gingrich doesn't take the Birther claims seriously, he too is unfit to be President of the United States because he clearly has no respect for the Constitution:

Gingrich and those like him have no interest in preserving and respecting the authority of the Constitution of the United States. If they did they would stop playing cynical political games with an issue that so directly undermines that authority. They would cease their contemptibly clever efforts to use the issue for political advantage and instead support or undertake straightforward efforts to ascertain the facts and conscientiously reached the judgments the Constitution requires.

Like every official who has served in some capacity in the government of the United States Newt Gingrich swore an oath to uphold the Constitution. But on the simple and straightforward issue of the Constitution’s eligibility requirements for the office of President of the United States he has dutifully run with the jackals of contempt for anyone who demands that those requirements be respected. If elected president of the United States he will again swear the same oath as he takes office. Since he has forsworn it on so clear a constitutional issue as this, why should anyone believe that he or anyone like him will deal courageously with the more complex issues of constitutional integrity that now threaten to destroy our liberty.

Operation Black Storm Will Save America From Obama's Socialist Nazi Tyranny

Do not delude yourself into thinking that you can withstand Operation Black Storm, because you cannot:

Patriot PAC has unveiled Operation Black Storm, a national coalition effort to unite the nation behind the 15 black conservative congressional candidates running in key districts around the country as Republican nominees for the upcoming November elections.

Helping to lead the charge among the Tea Party and Patriot movement in America for substantive political reform, Operation Black Storm will fight to fundamentally reshape the makeup of the U.S. Congress on November 2, 2010.

Star Parker - CA-37, Ryan Frazier - CO-7, Allen West - FL-22, Isaac Hayes - IL-2, Marvin Scott - IN-7, Robert Broadus - MD-4, Charles Lollar - MD-5, Bill Marcy - MS-2, Michael Faulkner - NY-15, Bill Randall - NC-13, Tim Scott - SC-3, Charlotte Bergman - TN-9, Stephen Broden - TX-9, Chuck Smith - VA-3, and Vince Danet - US Virgin Islands are Operation Black Storm candidates, several of whom have received endorsements from conservative grassroots favorites Sarah Palin, Newt Gingrich and Alan Keyes.

This coalition has put its collective weight behind these highly qualified conservative black candidates to provide the resources and exposure they need to win on Election Day. Coalition members helping with voter education and candidate scorecards include Break the Bonds of Tyranny, Unite in Action, The ConservativeMESSENGER, The Frederick Douglass Foundation, and The Black Sphere, among others.

And come Election Day, you will get on your knees and thank these warriors for stepping up and putting an end to the Hitler-Stalin-Carter-Obama-Nazi-Communist tyranny that is destroying America:

2012 Candidates Weekly Update 10/12/10

Newt Gingrich

Extremism: Detractors condemn Gingrich’s increasingly heated rhetoric (Politico, 10/11).

Government: Calls Democrats “the party of food stamps” (AP, 10/7).

Health Care: Pushes repeal of reform law to business conference (The Bakersfield Californian, 10/9).

Mike Huckabee

2010: Solicits contributions for Alan Grayson’s opponent Dan Webster (Sunshine State News, 10/11).

Media: Coulter says Huckabee is the “only one true Christian liberal in the country” (Mediaite, 10/10).

Sarah Palin

Poll: Just 22% of Americans view Palin positively (CBS News, 10/6).

2010: Says midterm election represents a “Great Awakening” among voters (Politico, 10/11).

Media: Blasts the “lamestream media” and Tea Party critics at “Patriotic Gala” fundraiser (MSNBC, 10/11).

Foreign Affairs: Tells NewsMax that a nuclear Iran could “lead to an Armageddon” (News Max, 10/11).

Tim Pawlenty

Religious Right: Fundraises for Ralph Reed’s Faith and Freedom Coalition (Iowa Politics, 10/10).

Iowa: Visits three cities and hosts fundraiser with GOP gubernatorial nominee Terry Branstad (Radio Iowa, 10/11).

Health Care: Dubs reform law “one of the worst pieces of legislation in modern history” (Sioux City Journal, 10/9).

Ron Paul

Iowa: Speaking at University of Iowa and a GOP fundraiser later this month (Iowa Independent, 10/11).

Tea Party: Praises “Nullification” movement at Tea Party convention (Slate, 10/9).

Mike Pence

Religious Right: Tells Virginia Family Foundation that “the problems we have as a nation are not just political, but moral” (Richmond Times Dispatch, 10/10).

GOP: Headlines Reagan Day Dinner in Florida (Saint Peters Blog, 10/11).

Mitt Romney

Religious Right: Avoids comment on Mormon leader’s anti-gay speech (Salt Lake City Tribune, 10/7).

Health Care: MA Republicans don’t want Romney to denounce reform law he signed as governor (Boston Globe, 10/8).

Foreign Affairs: Knocks Obama for “apologizing for America” (The Bakersfield Californian, 10/9).

Rick Santorum

Iowa: Launches Iowa Keystone PAC to help state Republicans (Politico, 10/7).

Religious Right: Criticizes ACLU over reproductive rights (NewsMax, 10/9).

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).

Florida Bar To File Misconduct Complaint Against John Stemberger

A few weeks back we noted that the Florida Family Policy Council's John Stemberger was being sued for $10 million over his role in the Rifqa Bary saga.

And now it looks like things are getting progressively worse for him as the Florida Bar Association is preparing to file a misconduct complaint against him:

A professional organization for lawyers said Thursday it is drafting a misconduct complaint against the former attorney of a teenager from Ohio who ran away to Florida after converting to Christianity.

John Stemberger, an Orlando, Fla., lawyer, represented Rifqa Bary after she alleged her Muslim parents in suburban Columbus would harm her for converting.

The Florida Bar's grievance committee found enough evidence of alleged misconduct to prepare a complaint, said bar spokeswoman Karen Kirksey.

The bar looked into the matter after a formal complaint was filed with the group by Ohio lawyer Omar Tarazi, who represented Bary's parents in Ohio juvenile court.

Tarazi alleged Stemberger misrepresented himself as Bary's lawyer after Bary returned to Ohio and had new lawyers. Tarazi, who is Muslim, also accused Stemberger of alleging that Tarazi has terrorist ties.

The bar committee expects to file its complaint with the Florida Supreme Court this fall.

Gee, who would have ever imagined that Stemberger's legal work might be questionable:

An attorney suing Dollar Rent-A-Car has apologized for filing a lawsuit that characterized the Irish as hopelessly tethered to pubs and pints and unfit to drive the highways of America.

John Stemberger admitted he made a mistake and promised Wednesday to rewrite the negligence lawsuit he filed in March.

The suit was filed on behalf of the family of Carmel Elizabeth Cunningham, an Irish woman who was killed last year when her boyfriend, Sean McGrath, crashed their rental car. He is also Irish.

Prosecutors say McGrath, 33, was drunk at the time of the crash and have charged him with manslaughter. A warrant has been issued for his arrest.

In the suit, Stemberger claimed Dollar "knew or should have known about the unique cultural and ethnic customs existing in Ireland which involve the regular consumption of alcohol at `Pubs' as a major component to Irish social life.''

He went on to charge that Dollar "knew or should have known that Sean McGrath would have a high propensity to drink alcohol.''

On a side note, according to Stemberger's Twitter account, he attended an Arlington Group meeting in Washington DC last week and then spoke in South Carolina along with Newt Gingrich and David Barton.

Value Voter Recap: We're All Tea Partiers Now (Including God)

The so-called Values Voter Summit, organized by the Family Research Council and sponsored by a number of right-wing groups, brought more than 2,000 activists (their count) to Washington D.C. for two solid days of speeches, workshops, networking, and a chance to spend time with others who passionately hate President Obama and the Democratic congressional leadership. Addressing the crowd were a number of GOP presidential hopefuls, including Newt Gingrich, Rick Santorum, Mike Huckabee, and Rep. Mike Pence (who eked out a narrow victory over Huckabee in the straw poll). Not surprisingly, conference speakers echoed the themes heard at the smaller Faith and Freedom conference convened by Ralph Reed just one week earlier.

Here were the top themes emerging from these Religious Right political conferences.
 
1) We’re All Tea Partiers Now (Including God)
 
The Faith and Freedom conference and Values Voter Summit signaled the Religious Right’s full embrace of (or effort to co-opt) the Tea Party movement and its activists’ anti-Washington energies. Rep. Michele Bachmann, a superstar in both the Religious Right and Tea Party movements, railed at Tea Party critics: “If you are scared of the Tea Party movement, you are afraid of Thomas Jefferson, who penned our mission statement [the Declaration of Independence].”
 
The events were also designed to attack the notion that the Tea Party movement is, or should be, focused only on economic issues and not on moral ones. This is more than the ongoing effort to solidify a working electoral partnership among fiscal, social, and national security conservatives. This is an ideological campaign against the very idea that one can legitimately be a fiscal conservative without embracing the Religious Right’s “family values” agenda on issues such as legal abortion and marriage equality. At the Values Voter Summit, there was little patience for libertarians who consider themselves economically conservative but socially liberal. Sen. Jim DeMint, greeted as a folk-hero for his success at backing Tea Party challengers to establishment GOP candidates, took on the idea directly, saying “you can’t be a true fiscal conservative if you do not understand the value of a culture that is based on values.” 
 
Others echoed the theme. A Heritage Foundation video declared that faith is necessary for liberty. Rep Mike Pence, the dark-horse winner of the summit’s straw poll, said America’s darkest moments have come when economic arguments trumped moral principles. Newt Gingrich declared that activists have to go back to making the moral case for free enterprise, not the economic case. David Limbaugh decried “economic justice,” which he called a leftist euphemism for “confiscation.” 
 
At a Values Voter Summit panel on the Tea Party movement, two activists described their work as being inspired in part by instructions they received from God in the early morning hours, like Glenn Beck; one insisted that her activism was not just about taxes but about getting America to turn back to God.
 
2) Nothing is more important than the 2010 and 2012 elections.
 
Nearly every speaker said that the 2010 election is the most important in our lifetime. Speakers insisted that President Obama, his administration, and Democratic congressional leaders are not only wrong, they are evil and are out to destroy the American experiment in limited government and individual liberty.  It is simply not possible to overstate the level of anger and hostility directed toward Obama (described as an America-hating narcissistic Marxist), House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid. 
 
Activists were told they must fast, pray, and work hard to defeat Democrats this November. The Family Research Council urged people to visit the website of Pray and A.C.T, a campaign led by Jim Garlow, who has been a rising star on the Religious Right since leading religious organizing on behalf of California’s anti-gay Prop 8. Ralph Reed is promising to share with local activists a massive new database of faith-based and fiscally conservative voters that he is building. 
 
Activists were also told that they must plan to keep sacrificing their time, energy and money for the next two years to make sure that Obama is defeated in 2012. Former Sen. Rick Santorum told activists not to expect dramatic improvements even if they win big in November: things won’t really change for the better as long as the White House is in Obama’s hands. Activists were warned that these two elections may be the last chance to stop the nation’s slide toward socialism and the end of America as we know it.
 
Right-wing speakers are optimistic about the possibility of delivering both the House and Senate into Republican hands and electing a conservative Republican president in 2012. FRC’s PAC held a fundraiser Friday night for Christine O’Donnell, the new Tea Party-backed GOP Senate candidate from Delaware, and other like-minded candidates.   Ralph Reed said that voter registration and focused turnout campaigns being waged by his and other right-wing groups would turn this from a good election cycle for Republicans into a historically sweeping one. And there’s particular excitement that Florida GOP Senate candidate Marco Rubio could be the face of the GOP’s future: right-wing strategists see him as Ronald Reagan and Barack Obama rolled into one appealing, Latino-vote-getting package.
 
3) Repealing Health Care Reform the Top Legislative Priority
 
According to several Values Voter Summit speakers, health care reform legislation signed into law by President Obama wasn’t really about health care at all. It was about extending the power of the federal government into tyrannical realms. Repealing “Obamacare” before it fully goes into effect is the top legislative priority of movement leaders. Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell was one of several speakers who called the legislation unconstitutional, saying that if the legislation was allowed to stand, it would effectively spell the end of any limits on federal power. 
 
4) Muslims Replace Immigrants as a Top Target
 
While previous conferences have portrayed unchecked illegal immigration as the most dire threat to America, this year’s speakers picked up on the right-wing generated furor over a proposed Islamic center in lower Manhattan – the inaccurately dubbed “Ground Zero Mosque” – to make repeated bitter denunciations of Islam. Immigration was not completely ignored: Presidential hopeful Mitt Romney, in a list of complaints, denounced the White House for being an administration “whose idea of a rogue state is Arizona,” and the Heritage Foundation sponsored a workshop on “The Real Cost of Illegal Immigration.” But the real energy was in attacking Islam, which was a primary focus of remarks by Bill Bennett and Gary Bauer.
 
5) Pursuit of Happiness With an Asterisk: Gays Need Not Apply
 
Not surprisingly, all the talk about individual liberty being at the core of our national identity did not extend to the freedom of gay and lesbian Americans to pursue happiness by marrying the person they love. Several speakers exhorted attendees to help mobilize conservative voters in Iowa to turn out for upcoming retention elections and vote against Iowa Supreme Court justices who ruled that denying gay couples the freedom to marriage violated the state’s constitution. The American Family Association’s Bryan Fischer, who insisted that there is no confusion about what is right in the sight of God and what is evil in the sight of God, said that politicians who support, defend, and promote “counterfeits” to marriage (which include not only marriage equality but also civil unions and domestic partnerships) are doing something evil and deserve condemnation. Fischer repeated Religious Right claims that LGBT equality and religious liberty are incompatible: “we are going to have to choose between the homosexual agenda and religious liberty because we simply cannot have both.”
 
The federal Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell law which forbids gay members of the Armed Forces for serving openly and honestly, was also high on speakers’ minds. Sen. James Inhofe urged people to call their senators in advance of a scheduled vote on a defense authorization bill that would include language to overturn Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell as well as language that would, in his words, turn military hospitals into abortion clinics. 

2012 Candidates Weekly Update 9/21/10

Your update on the potential 2012 Presidential candidates for 9/14-9/21:

Mitch Daniels

2012: Newt Gingrich says Daniels should run for President (Courier & Press, 9/21).

Economy: Attends Chamber of Commerce event in Indianapolis (WIBC, 9/20).

PAC: Leadership PAC runs ads encouraging IN voters to support Republicans (Politico, 9/19).

Newt Gingrich

Religious Right: Demands ban on Sharia Law’s use in US Courts (TPM, 9/18).

Health Care: Calls for HHS Sec. Kathleen Sebelius’ resignation, compares her service to “Soviet tyranny” (Politico, 9/18).

GOP: Headlines fundraiser for the Minnesota GOP (Star Tribune, 9/17).

Obama: Gingrich attacked by critics for pushing over the top anti-Obama rhetoric (NY Daily News, 9/20).

Mike Huckabee

Obama: Criticizes President’s treatment of Christians (Newsmax, 9/17).

GOP: “Thrilled” about the defeat of “establishment” candidate in primaries (Huffington Post, 9/20).

2010: Expects a Republican wave in home state of Arkansas (Arkansas Democrat Gazette, 9/20).

Sarah Palin

Iowa: Speaks at Iowa’s Ronald Reagan Dinner, tells Fox News she may “give it a shot” to Presidential run (NY Daily News, 9/18).

2012: Wins straw poll of presidential prospects at RightNation convention (Chicago Sun-Times, 9/20).

2010: Tweets to Delaware’s Christine O’Donnell with a warning against “appeasing nat'l media” that’s “seeking ur destruction” (The Hill, 9/19).

Religious Right: FRC head Tony Perkins suggests that Palin is a “cheerleader” rather than a presidential candidate (Politico, 9/18).

Media: Claims that journalists disrespect fallen troops when they “tell lies” about her (Des Moines Register, 9/17).

Poll: Rasmussen survey says slight majority of Americans identify more with Palin’s views than Obama’s (Rasmussen Reports, 9/20).

Tim Pawlenty

2010: Fundraising for GOP gubernatorial nominee Scott Walker in Wisconsin (AP, 9/20).

Economy: WSJ profiles Governors like Pawlenty and others who visited China (WSJ, 9/20).

Mike Pence

Religious Right: Indiana Congressman wins a plurality of votes at Values Voter Summit’s 2012 straw poll (MSNBC, 9/18).

2012: Speaks to conservative Hillsdale College about the Presidency (EducationNews, 9/21).

2010: Defends Christine O’Donnell in Delaware from attacks (CNN, 9/20).

Mitt Romney

New Hampshire: Romney’s Leadership PAC endorses and donates to victors of GOP primaries (Politics Daily, 9/18).

Religious Right: Lashes out at Obama’s economic and social policies, “counterfeit” values at Values Voter Summit (Religion Dispatches, 9/20).

Poll: Leads 2012 pack with 22% support from Republicans (Public Policy Polling, 9/12).

2010: Going to Florida to stump for Gov hopeful Rick Scott (Daily Sun, 9/20).

Rick Santorum

South Carolina: Tests message in early primary state (Daily Caller, 9/16).

Religious Right: Says that families don’t exist in poor neighborhoods (CBS News, 9/17).

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).

Right Wing Leftovers

  • Twice-divorced, thrice-married Newt Gingrich has been confirmed as a speaker for the FRC's Values Voter Summit.
  • The Traditional Values Coalition, of all groups, opposes "Burn a Quran Day."
  • David Barton, Rick Green, and Tom DeLay go on and on about how poor DeLay was the victim of a partisan witch-hunt because he was such an awesome Congressman and Christian.
  • Focus on the Family is outraged that George Soros donated $100 million to the "Anti-Family, Anti-Faith Group" Human Rights Watch.
  • I genuinely have no idea what the point of this Catholic League press release is supposed to be.
  • Finally, the quote of the day from Alan Sears of the Alliance Defense Fund: "Judges and politicians can ignore all the legal and constitutional standards they want to ram the homosexual political agenda down our throats. But they will never make the actions at the base of that agenda anything but a sin—and like any other sin, its indulgence brings only misery, for individuals, and for a nation."

Gingrich Wants Ground Zero Declared a National Battlefield Memorial to Stop Park 51

David Barton and Newt Gingrich have been working together for years now, but today was the first time Gingrich had ever appeared on Barton's "Wallbuilders Live" radio program.

Gingrich came on to discuss his recent column opposing the so-called "Ground Zero Mosque" and did so did so with typical Gingrichian belligerence, but eventually the topic turned toward how to actually prevent it from being built and Gingrich's preferred solution is for Congress to declare Ground Zero to be a national battlefield memorial:

Well, there are a lot of places. I think the Congress has the ability to declare the area a national battlefield memorial because I think we should think of the World Trade Center as a battlefield site; this is a war.

The Attorney General of New York, Andrew Cuomo, could intervene because frankly he has the ability to slow it down for decades if he wants to.

I am surprised that Mayor Bloomberg said it was okay and I think that if he reconsiders it, he'll decide its not.

There are a number of different steps that could be taken. There's no reason this has to occur and whether it's city, state, or federal there are plenty of ways for America to stop it.

Elsewhere, Barton gushes over Gingrich's amazing genius and notes that he has been utterly forgiven by the Religious Right for his previous multiple marital failings:

And finally, Rick Green asked Gingrich if he was planning on running for president in 2012, to which Gingrich replied that if he does decide to do so, Barton and Wallbuilders will be asked to play a key role in the campaign:

Green: Mr. Speaker, my wife and I were really wanting to be able to vote for you for president two years ago. Are we going to get to do that in 2012?

Gingrich: All I can tell you is that sometime in February or March, Calista and I and our family will be making this decision. As you know, I'm a great admirer of your work and of all you've done to teach Americans about their history and the roots of American freedom. And I can assure you that if we do decide to run next year, we're promptly going to call you and say "we need your help, and we need your advice, and we need your counsel." It's more than a voting matter. If we decide to run, David, we're going to need you.

Right Wing Leftovers

  • Gov. Bob McDonnell has now been confirmed as a speaker at the Values Voter Summit.
  • Tony Perkins again warns the GOP not to abandon social issues.
  • Shockingly, people on the Right are not happy about the revelation that Keh Mehlman is gay.
  • Bryan Fischer says ... well, it's Bryan Fischer, so you know what he says.
  • Mike Huckabee asks you to join him in thanking Ken Cuccinelli for fighting health care reform.
  • Newt Gingrich is listed on this new list of confirmed speakers for Ralph Reed's Faith and Freedom conference.
  • You know what America needs?  A new documentary featuring Bryan Fischer, Janet Porter, Wendy Wright, Phyllis Schlafly, Cliff Kincaid and others explaining how Obama is turning this nation into a Communist state:
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Newt Gingrich Posts Archive

Brian Tashman, Friday 12/30/2011, 5:35pm
Facing a barrage of negative ads and a severe drop in support among Iowa voters, Newt Gingrich today held a conference call with Iowa pastors to build up his support among the state’s social conservative voters. Religious Right leaders Don Wildmon and Jim Garlow, both of whom have endorsed Gingrich, were featured on the call, and David Brody of CBN News obtained Wildmon’s letter sent to Iowa pastors. In the letter, Wildmon stressed Gingrich’s “thrust to remove elitist judges,” including the Iowa justices who “voted in 2009 to impose homosexual marriage on... MORE >
Brian Tashman, Thursday 12/29/2011, 11:15am
Last night during a tele-town hall hosted by Ralph Reed’s Faith and Freedom Coalition, a caller asked Newt Gingrich if he would consider choosing Sarah Palin as his running mate if he wins the Republican nomination. Gingrich responded that Palin “is certainly one of the people you would look at” and told the caller that he is “a great admirer of hers,” saying “she was a remarkable reform governor of Alaska.” He also floated appointing Palin to a Cabinet position such as Energy Secretary because he “can’t imagine anybody who would do a... MORE >
Brian Tashman, Wednesday 12/28/2011, 12:20pm
Newt Gingrich appeared on Monday’s program of WallBuilders Live with David Barton and Rick Green, where Gingrich once again praised Barton’s right-wing pseudo-history and activism. In fact, Gingrich gave Barton credit for helping him develop his plan to assault the “judicial dictatorship” if elected president. He told Barton and Green that his plan is sending shockwaves through the “the secular left, which has been using the courts to replace the America we grew up in” by legalizing abortion, “driving God out of public life” and making same-sex... MORE >
Brian Tashman, Thursday 12/22/2011, 12:45pm
On Tuesday, the founder of the far-right American Family Association Don Wildmon endorsed Newt Gingrich for president, citing Gingrich’s stringent attacks against the judiciary and the need to stop Mitt Romney from winning the Republican nomination as reasons for his endorsement. Wildmon told AFA spokesman Bryan Fischer, who has harshly criticized Gingrich, that he was originally “ecstatic” about Rick Perry but decided against supporting him due to his poor debate performances and said that only Gingrich can stop “the homosexuals and the liberals” from their plot... MORE >
Brian Tashman, Wednesday 12/21/2011, 6:35pm
Republican presidential candidiates Michele Bachmann, Newt Gingrich and Rick Santorum have signed on for a “Presidential Pro-Life Forum” hosted by Personhood USA and moderated by Iowa conservative radio personality Steve Deace. The three candidates along with Rick Perry have already announced their support for personhood laws. Personhood USA wants abortion and even common forms of birth control banned without exception, and personhood laws may even outlaw in-vitro fertilization and the treatment of problem pregnancies. The group launched unsuccessful referendums in Colorado and... MORE >
Kyle Mantyla, Tuesday 12/20/2011, 5:04pm
Richard Land, president of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission, has been busy spinning bizarre theories about how the media will have to try to make voters uncomfortable with Mitt Romney's faith in order to help President Obama because Evangelical Christian voters would have no qualms about voting for a Mormon. The only problem with Land's conspiracy theory is that it is constantly being undermined by others, like the new president of the South Carolina Baptist Convention, Brad Atkins, who says that Christians would have a much easier time voting... MORE >
Brian Tashman, Tuesday 12/20/2011, 11:30am
Newt Gingrich today nabbed the endorsement of Don Wildmon, the founder of the American Family Association, which is now under the leadership of his son, Tim. Wildmon praised Gingrich’s aggressive attacks on the judiciary, saying, “Newt Gingrich recognizes the threat to our country posed by judges and lawyers imposing values upon the country inconsistent with our religious heritage, and has proposed constitutional steps to bring the courts back in balance under the constitution,” and Gingrich welcomed the endorsement by calling Wildmon “one of the most important leaders... MORE >
Kyle Mantyla, Monday 12/19/2011, 12:19pm
Back when Newt Gingrich's presidential campaign was just getting off the ground and nobody was giving him any chance of winning the Republican nomination, Gingrich had the very vocal support of Pastor Jim Garlow. As we noted then, Garlow had led the Prop 8 fight against marriage equality in order to save the "sanctity of marriage" and so it seemed rather odd for him to be throwing his support behind a thrice-married adulterer. Now that Gingrich is among the leaders in the GOP primary, Garlow has penned a long email to evangelicals explaining in great depth just why he is... MORE >