Sarah Palin

Conservative Blogs Unleash More Animosity in Reaction to Obama’s Speech

After President Obama called for more civility and reconciliation in politics and asked Americans to remember the late Christina Taylor Green, saying, “I want our democracy to be as good as she imagined it,” right-wing blogs came out swinging and swiftly responded with their predictable enmity.

RedState’s Erick Erickson wrote that Obama was the one to atone for his ties to Bill Ayers, and also said that progressives were plotting Sarah Palin’s murder:

This is, after all, a man who got his political start in the home of a terrorist who’d dedicated a book to Robert F. Kennedy’s killer — a man who never repented but who Mr. Obama then gave grant money to.

Will the President live up to his own standard? Everyone can change. Everyone can repent. Let’s hope this President will.

But there is much that still must be done and much the left must still learn.



All week long, the left has said Jared Loughner was persuaded to try to kill Congresswoman Giffords because of right-wing hate. We know that was not true. But here is what else I am sure of.

Out there somewhere is someone who would love to kill Governor Palin. God forbid they do it. But you and I both know there is some crazy MSNBC watcher and Media Matters reader who even now is dreaming of doing so.

And should they try, we can be equally sure of something else. The left will be divided into two camps: (1) bitch deserved it and (2) not my fault.

It is unfortunate. I hope it never happens. But you and I both know the reality in which we live.

John Hayward of Human Events charged Obama and event organizers for putting on a political rally rather than a memorial service, and while Hayward said the President’s speech was “mostly excellent,” he then slammed him for being a “hard-core liberal” and for supporting Sheriff Dupnik’s earlier call for tolerance:

One of the most emotional moments came when President Obama departed from his script to announce that wounded Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords had opened her eyes… and he proceeded to work the line with hallelujah fervor, repeating it several times to juice up the crowd. There doesn’t seem to have been much effort to engineer an atmosphere of solemn dignity.



The most anticipated, and problematic, passage in the President’s speech was his call for a return to civility in politics. “What we can’t do is use this tragedy as one more occasion to turn on one another,” he declared. Sorry, Mr. President, but a vast segment of your supporters has already done that. Admonishing every part of the political spectrum to avoid “pointing fingers and assigning blame” is horribly disingenuous. Barack Obama is not a centrist wandering into a partisan squabble, and offering a hand of peace to both sides. He’s a hard-core liberal, and the hard Left has been doing all of the finger-pointing during this drama, beginning within minutes of the shooting.

Remember, this is the same President Obama who recently called the vicious partisan gasbag sheriff of Pima County, Clarence Dupnik, to congratulate him on a job well done. There is absolutely no evidence that Obama, or anyone from his Administration, told Dupnik to lay off his wacko theories about Rush Limbaugh and Sarah Palin inspiring Loughner to commit murder… theories he has loudly repeated in front of every television camera he can find.

Paul Mirengoff of Power Line was angry that despite numerous readings from the Bible from the President and other speakers, the service wasn’t 'Christian' or 'American' enough:

As for the "ugly," I'm afraid I must cite the opening "prayer" by Native American Carlos Gonzales. It was apparently was some sort of Yaqui Indian tribal thing, with lots of references to "the creator" but no mention of God. Several of the victims were, as I understand it, quite religious in that quaint Christian kind of way (none, to my knowledge, was a Yaqui). They (and their families) likely would have appreciated a prayer more closely aligned with their religious beliefs.

But it wasn't just Gonzales's prayer that was "ugly" under the circumstances. Before he ever got to the prayer, Gonzales provided us with a mini-auto biography and made several references to Mexico, the country from which (he informed us) his family came to Arizona in the mid 19th century. I'm not sure why Gonzales felt that Mexico needed to intrude into this service, but I have an idea.

In any event, the invocation could have used more God, less Mexico, and less Carlos Gonzales.

Conservative Blogs Unleash More Animosity in Reaction to Obama’s Speech

After President Obama called for more civility and reconciliation in politics and asked Americans to remember the late Christina Taylor Green, saying, “I want our democracy to be as good as she imagined it,” right-wing blogs came out swinging and swiftly responded with their predictable enmity.

RedState’s Erick Erickson wrote that Obama was the one to atone for his ties to Bill Ayers, and also said that progressives were plotting Sarah Palin’s murder:

This is, after all, a man who got his political start in the home of a terrorist who’d dedicated a book to Robert F. Kennedy’s killer — a man who never repented but who Mr. Obama then gave grant money to.

Will the President live up to his own standard? Everyone can change. Everyone can repent. Let’s hope this President will.

But there is much that still must be done and much the left must still learn.



All week long, the left has said Jared Loughner was persuaded to try to kill Congresswoman Giffords because of right-wing hate. We know that was not true. But here is what else I am sure of.

Out there somewhere is someone who would love to kill Governor Palin. God forbid they do it. But you and I both know there is some crazy MSNBC watcher and Media Matters reader who even now is dreaming of doing so.

And should they try, we can be equally sure of something else. The left will be divided into two camps: (1) bitch deserved it and (2) not my fault.

It is unfortunate. I hope it never happens. But you and I both know the reality in which we live.

John Hayward of Human Events charged Obama and event organizers for putting on a political rally rather than a memorial service, and while Hayward said the President’s speech was “mostly excellent,” he then slammed him for being a “hard-core liberal” and for supporting Sheriff Dupnik’s earlier call for tolerance:

One of the most emotional moments came when President Obama departed from his script to announce that wounded Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords had opened her eyes… and he proceeded to work the line with hallelujah fervor, repeating it several times to juice up the crowd. There doesn’t seem to have been much effort to engineer an atmosphere of solemn dignity.



The most anticipated, and problematic, passage in the President’s speech was his call for a return to civility in politics. “What we can’t do is use this tragedy as one more occasion to turn on one another,” he declared. Sorry, Mr. President, but a vast segment of your supporters has already done that. Admonishing every part of the political spectrum to avoid “pointing fingers and assigning blame” is horribly disingenuous. Barack Obama is not a centrist wandering into a partisan squabble, and offering a hand of peace to both sides. He’s a hard-core liberal, and the hard Left has been doing all of the finger-pointing during this drama, beginning within minutes of the shooting.

Remember, this is the same President Obama who recently called the vicious partisan gasbag sheriff of Pima County, Clarence Dupnik, to congratulate him on a job well done. There is absolutely no evidence that Obama, or anyone from his Administration, told Dupnik to lay off his wacko theories about Rush Limbaugh and Sarah Palin inspiring Loughner to commit murder… theories he has loudly repeated in front of every television camera he can find.

Paul Mirengoff of Power Line was angry that despite numerous readings from the Bible from the President and other speakers, the service wasn’t 'Christian' or 'American' enough:

As for the "ugly," I'm afraid I must cite the opening "prayer" by Native American Carlos Gonzales. It was apparently was some sort of Yaqui Indian tribal thing, with lots of references to "the creator" but no mention of God. Several of the victims were, as I understand it, quite religious in that quaint Christian kind of way (none, to my knowledge, was a Yaqui). They (and their families) likely would have appreciated a prayer more closely aligned with their religious beliefs.

But it wasn't just Gonzales's prayer that was "ugly" under the circumstances. Before he ever got to the prayer, Gonzales provided us with a mini-auto biography and made several references to Mexico, the country from which (he informed us) his family came to Arizona in the mid 19th century. I'm not sure why Gonzales felt that Mexico needed to intrude into this service, but I have an idea.

In any event, the invocation could have used more God, less Mexico, and less Carlos Gonzales.

More Right-Wing Spin on Tucson Shootings; Malkin Sees Campaign to “Criminalize Conservativism”

While Sarah Palin tries to make herself out as the real victim of the shootings in Arizona, even going so far as to compare herself to Jewish victims of “blood libels,” the right-wing echo-chamber has been busy spinning the shootings in Tucson. After Tea Party Nation head Judson Phillips called Jared Lee Loughner “a liberal lunatic,” conservatives eagerly promoted his claims. NewsMax claimed that Loughner has links to “left-wing politics” since his favorite books include “‘The Communist Manifesto’ by Karl Marx, Adolf Hitler’s ‘Mein Kampf,’ and the fiction classic ‘One Flew over the Cuckoo's Nest.’” The American Family Association’s news service declared the “AZ shooter a leftist, not tea party supporter,” quoting Larry Pratt of Gun Owners of America who “believes there is substantial evidence to show that suspect, Jared Lee Loughner, is an angry leftist who hates America and Christianity.” The RightNetwork’s Gateway Pundit maintained that Loughner is a “Left-Winger” because he “likes watching US flags burn & favorite book is ‘Communist Manifesto,’” and WorldNetDaily said Loughner may have been influenced by a “liberal group founded by Weatherman terrorist Bill Ayers and funded by President Obama.”

Rush Limbaugh even alleged that Loughner “has the full support of a major political party in this country. He's sitting there in jail; he knows what's going on. He knows that a Democrat [sic] Party -- the Democrat [sic] Party -- is attempting to find anybody but him to blame.”

But when the Right isn’t attempting to paint Loughner as a liberal, they try to demonize Pima County Sheriff Clarence Dupnik. Right-wing writer Michelle Malkin today called Dupnik “The Worst Sheriff in America” and condemned his “vulture-like exploitation of the shooting rampage.” Dupnik, who has spoken out against the role of violence and hate mongering in politics, has found himself in the crosshairs of conservative pundits and politicians. Now, Malkin seeks to blame the Sheriff for the shooting and accuses him of seeking publicity for himself and attempting to “criminalize conservatism”:

Dupnik's mouth has done more to stoke self-inflicted ire against elected government clowns than anything the right could muster against him. Had the hyper-partisan Democrat been more in tune with his job than the media airwaves, the murderous, maniacal gunman might have been stopped.

As Dupnik himself has now admitted, Loughner leveled death threats against others that were investigated by law enforcement -- and then apparently shrugged off. Locals note that Loughner's mother worked for the county and may have had some pull. Pima County College campus police reported five serious confrontations with the mentally unstable young man before he was kicked out of the school, which he decried as an unconstitutional "torture facility." Classmates said they feared for their lives. His friends say he was a pothead, a 9/11 Truther and a UFO conspiracist so kooky that even flying-objects adherents spurned him.

Despite zero evidence that Rush Limbaugh, cable news, the tea party movement or immigration enforcement activists had anything to do with Loughner's warped attack, shameless Sheriff Dupnik shows no signs of shutting up.

The worst sheriff in America is walking in the footsteps of another infamous law enforcement official who put fame, ambition and ideology above public safety: disgraced Montgomery County (Md.) Police Chief Charles Moose, the publicity-hungry Keystone Cop who grossly bungled the Beltway sniper attacks in 2002.

...

Dupnik is now following the same ill-gotten path. But decent Americans understand that he and his civilian counterparts have traveled a smear too far. Despite desperate attempts by the progressive left to pin the massacre on the "harsh tone" of its political opponents, a vast majority of Americans reject the cynical campaign to criminalize conservatism, suppress political free speech and capitalize on violent crime for electoral gain.

2012 Candidates Weekly Update 1/11/10

Michele Bachmann

PAC: Vast majority of MICHELE PAC money went to Iowa politicians or PACs (National Journal, 1/10).

Religious Right: Potential 2012 bid wins plaudits from Religious Right activists (RWW, 1/10).

Iowa: Speaks to Iowans for Tax Relief PAC in Des Moines on 1/21 (Iowans for Tax Relief PAC, 1/7).

Mitch Daniels

Indiana: Makes 7th State of the State address with emphasis on education (South Bend Tribune, 1/11).

CPAC: To address the Conservative Political Action Conference along with other 2012 prospects (Politico, 1/6).

Newt Gingrich

Religious Right: Invited to speak at the Freedom Federation’s Awakening 2011 along with other potential 2012 candidates (RWW, 1/10).

Iowa: Listed to address Iowa Renewable Fuels Association in Des Moines on Janurary 25th (Des Moines Register, 1/10).

Mike Huckabee

Iowa: New poll shows Huckabee on top with 24% support from Republicans (TPM, 1/10).

Poll: Gallup finds in nationwide poll that Huckabee has the highest favorable rating among potential GOP candidates (WSJ, 1/10).

Reproductive Rights: Scheduled to address anti-choice fundraise in Tennessee on February, 14th (Knoxville News Sentinel, 1/9).

Sarah Palin

Extremism: Faces torrent of criticism over "bullseye" map with target on Giffords's congressional district, defends herself to Glenn Beck (The Week & NYDN, 1/10).

Reality TV: Doesn't sign on for a second season of Sarah Palin's Alaska (Forbes, 1/10).

Tim Pawlenty

2012: Tells newspaper he is "seriously considering running for president" (St. Petersburg Times, 1/10).

Book: Memoir focuses on his faith, attacks on Obama (MN Public Radio, 1/8).

Palin: Calls Sarah Palin "a force of nature" (Mediaite, 1/7).

Mike Pence

Reproductive Rights: Introduces legislation to de-fund Planned Parenthood (Human Events, 1/10).

2012: Tells an Indiana Rotary Club that he will decide on future political plans by the end of January (The Republic, 1/10).

South Carolina: Keynote speaker for South Carolina’s America Conference (Politico, 1/4).

Mitt Romney

Foreign affairs: Met with Afghan leader Hamid Karzai as plan of tour of Afghanistan and Middle East (Boston Globe, 1/10).

Poll: Pew poll has Romney as most competitive candidate against Obama in Nevada (UPI, 1/10).

Rick Santorum

Religious Right: Speaks with group founded by right-wing activist Ovide Lamontagne (Granite Oath PAC, 1/10).

New Hampshire: Hires GOP Congressman Frank Guinta’s strategist as state director of his America’s Foundation PAC (Union Leader, 1/5).

GOP: Says Romney’s Massachusetts health care law will make it “very hard for us to nominate” him (National Journal, 1/4).

2012 Candidates Weekly Update 1/4/11

Mitch Daniels

Social issues: Candidates for RNC Chair pan Daniels's "truce" proposal (GOP12, 1/3).

2012: Claims that a potential presidential bid scares his family "to death" (The Hill, 1/3).

Newt Gingrich

Religious Right: Bryan Fischer of AFA thinks his history of extramarital affairs will doom him among social conservatives (RWW, 1/3).

Fundraising: Confirmed to address, along with Mike Pence, Illinois GOP fundraiser celebrating Ronald Reagan's birthday (Chicago Tribune, 1/3).

Mike Huckabee

Arkansas: Enthusiasm builds for a second presidential run in his home state of Arkansas (Politics Daily, 1/2).

Poll: Two out of three Republicans said that they were "very or somewhat likely" to back Huckabee, leading the field (CBNNews, 1/2).

Jon Huntsman

2012: Still open to presidential bid despite his appointment as Ambassador to China (Newsweek, 1/1).

Sarah Palin

Social issues: Re-tweets Tammy Bruce, who said that "the more someone complains about the homos the more we should look under their bed" (Gawker, 1/4).

GOP: Conservative writer George Will and blogger Erick Erickson dismiss Palin's chances of winning the Presidency (Salon, 1/3).

Book: Reviewer of America By Heart finds that "there is no identity she embraces with more alacrity than that of victim" (Religion Dispatches, 1/2).

Tim Pawlenty

2012: With Mark Dayton's inauguration as governor, Pawlenty now "full-time candidate" (The Atlantic, 1/3).

Book: Will begin tour for new book, Courage to Stand (Minnesota Public Radio, 1/3).

Mike Pence

Indiana: Fundraising plans point to potential gubernatorial bid (TPM, 1/4).

GOP: Wins the endorsement of RedState's Erick Erickson (RedState, 1/3).

Fundraising: Confirmed to address, along with Newt Gingrich, Illinois GOP fundraiser celebrating Ronald Reagan's birthday (Chicago Tribune, 1/3).

Mitt Romney

Massachusetts: May have a "Willie Horton" situation from his parole board appointments as Massachusetts governor (UPI, 1/3).

South Carolina: Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) calls Romney "the most electable conservative" (Greenville Online, 1/3).

Fischer Says Leading GOP Presidential Hopefuls All Fall Short

The American Family Association's Bryan Fischer takes a look at several of the GOP's presidential hopefuls and declares them all unacceptable and/or unelectable.

Mitt Romney:

Romney will prove unacceptable to genuine social conservatives because of his politics, not his religion. His newfound love affair with the public policy values of the Judeo-Christian tradition has all the marks of a conversion which is based on convenience rather than conviction. Romney knows he cannot win without support from the pro-life, pro-faith, pro-marriage community and so it appears he’s trying to paint himself as a sincere champion for our values. It is unlikely to work.

Mitt single-handedly, by executive fiat, imposed same-sex marriage on Massachusetts in 2004, and toppled the first domino in this disastrous social experiment ... And worse for him, he is the architect of the disastrous RomneyCare, a state-level version of ObamaCare.

Sarah Palin:

Sarah Palin is probably unelectable, because of her resignation as governor of Alaska and the savage and contemptible beating she has taken from the out-of-the-mainstream media. She has been successfully demonized by vicious press outlets, who seem determined to obliterate this woman’s electoral viability. And thanks to a gullible population which doesn’t believe anything the media says unless they say it about a conservative, she probably has too steep a hill to climb.

Newt Gingrich:

Newt’s troubled marital history is going to be his biggest problem. He is a brilliant thinker and strategist, and this seems to be his best role in assisting the conservative cause.

But the minimum social conservatives expect in their standard-bearer is someone who doesn’t just talk the talk when it comes to family values but walks the walk.

Unfortunately, Gingrich is on his third marriage, and left his first two wives while they were battling cancer and MS respectively. By his own admission, he was carrying on an affair with his current wife while leading the impeachment effort against President Clinton for lying about his dalliance with Monica Lewinsky. There likely is simply too much baggage here. If Newt does not run, none of this becomes an issue. The moment he declares, it does become an issue that social conservatives cannot and will not ignore.

Mike Huckabee:

Conservatives remain lingeringly suspicious of his stance on taxes, immigration, and cap and trade. In the past, he’s been on the wrong side on each of these issues, and they are of enormous importance to the Tea Party crowd.

His record of clemencies will also prove to be a problem. He granted clemency to a man who had committed a vicious kidnap, rape, and murder (the killer drove over the girl’s body with his car repeatedly to make sure she was dead and then dumped her body in a swamp) and who then, after receiving clemency from the governor, killed four people in Seattle in cold blood. That’s going to be a tough one for the governor to get past.

We can’t blame the governor for the actions of someone else, but the fact remains that four people would be alive today were it not for this clemency, and this will hurt his campaign to become the chief law enforcement officer in the land.

Right Wing Pushes “Super Death Panel” Myth

After The New York Times reported that the new health care reform law will cover “voluntary advance care planning” as a reimbursable Medicare service, the Obama Administration immediately feared pushback from right-wing opponents of reform. Anti-reform politicians and activists jumped on a widely-discredited and disputed article by former New York Lt. Governor Betsy McCaughey, who predicted that the reform bill will lead to government control over end-of-life decisions.

Republicans pounced on the false claim, as Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA) declared that the country “should not have a government run plan to decide when to pull the plug on grandma” and House Republican Leader John Boehner (R-OH) warned that the “provision may start us down a treacherous path toward government-encouraged euthanasia.” Most famously, Sarah Palin wrote on Facebook that her “baby with Down Syndrome will have to stand in front of Obama’s ‘death panel’ so his bureaucrats can decide” if he is “worthy of health care.” The New York Times said that “Ms. McCaughey has been the hammer to Ms. Palin’s nail” as the two “have driven some of the most disturbing, and distorted, claims about the proposals.”

Not only is the service voluntary, but Medscape Medical News reports that since January 1, 2009, “Medicare has been paying for [end-of-life care plans] in a limited fashion — and with little if any protest,” and the American Academy Family of Physicians and American College of Physicians applauded the move as a way to “tailor care” for each patient.

Conservatives though are already decrying the decision as the return of the death panels. Mat Staver of Liberty Counsel condemned what he called “a super death panel” that will put “pressure on the elderly to end their lives prematurely” by targeting senior citizens:

When you have the government mandating this end-of-life counseling, they're conscripting doctors to do end-of-life counseling on a massive scale. It will be the equivalent of a super death panel. Elderly patients will get confused and will end up signing documents without having a clue what they're signing, and they will sign away care they might really want.

Spokesmen from other Religious Right groups, including the American Life League, Concerned Women For America, and Operation Rescue, also denounced the purported "death panels":

"Nothing good can come of this," said Judie Brown, the president of American Life League. "This will affect everybody's parents and grandparents and preborn babies, and it will not affect anybody for the good."

Congress must step up to cancel the regulation, Brown added. "If not, a death certificate is written for an awful lot of elderly people."

"Those of us who voted in common-sense representatives to take control of the House will be expecting to see reversals of regulations like these that run roughshod over the will of the American people," said Dr. Janice Crouse, director of the Beverly LaHaye Institute at Concerned Women for America.



Operation Rescue President Troy Newman called the Obama approach "Darwinist," and predicted it would lead to rationing of health care.

"When you have a fixed amount of money that is allocated to health care, it's only logical that some bureaucrat will regulate it and decide who will get treatment," Newman told WND. "That treatment will be based on some humanist, egalitarian principle that these bureaucrats always seem to hold. Their principles are Darwinist, survival of the fittest.

"My grandmother is 94 years old," Newman continued. "Suppose she breaks her hip. Are they really going to authorize that expense over a 16-year-old who has urgent needs? It was Obama who said maybe Grandma should take a pill rather than get this expensive treatment."



"Having just returned from the funeral of a dear lady – widow of a Navy man, both buried at Arlington National Cemetery – I couldn't be more repulsed by the idea of government-controlled death panels that will make end-of-life decisions for the most vulnerable of our citizens," Crouse added.

Conservative columnist Cal Thomas uses Charles Dickens to blast the move, and claims that it redeems Sarah Palin:

Sarah Palin deserves an apology. When she said that the new health-care law would lead to "death panels" deciding who gets life-saving treatment and who does not, she was roundly denounced and ridiculed.



Do you see where this leads? First the prohibition against abortion is removed and "doctors" now perform them. Then the assault on the infirm and elderly begins. Once the definition of human life changes, all human lives become potentially expendable if they don't measure up to constantly "evolving" government standards.

It will all be dressed up with the best possible motives behind it and sold to the public as the ultimate benefit. The killings, uh, terminations, will take place out of sight so as not to disturb the masses who might have a few embers of a past morality still burning in their souls. People will sign documents testifying to their desire to die, and the government will see it as a means of "reducing the surplus population," to quote Charles Dickens.

Right Wing Leftovers

  • NOM praises a Tennessee group that made “Marriage God’s Way” billboards to counter the “glorified” gay “alternate lifestyle.”
  • Bryan Fischer and WorldNetDaily freak out about Obama’s support for the UN “Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous People.”
  • Herman Cain talks to The Hill about his possible presidential bid and may use CPAC as a “launching pad” for his candidacy.
  • Mitch Daniels says his social issues “truce” was directed at progressives, not conservatives.
  • Not even a majority of Republicans would support Sarah Palin if she ran for President.

2012 Candidates Weekly Update 12/21/10

Haley Barbour

Civil Rights: In Weekly Standard profile, Barbour lauds racist, pro-segregation Council of Conservative Citizens, doesn’t remember Jim Crow era as “that bad” (TPM, The Hill; 12/20).

Mississippi: Tries to shape his legacy as governor (Clarion Ledger, 12/19).

CPAC: Set to address Conservative Political Action Committee conference in February (ACU, 12/16).

Mike Huckabee

Fox News: As a guest, Rep. Anthony Weiner asks Huckabee, “How Much Do You Make Over There At Fox?” (Mediaite, 12/18).

Health Care: Backs 9/11 First Responders care bill blocked by GOP (HuffPo, 12/17).

Religious Right: Signs letter defending SPLC-designated anti-gay hate groups (RWW, 12/15).

Sarah Palin

Obama: Palin continues to knock Michelle Obama in her Reality TV show (LA Times, 12/20).

Poll: New ABC-WaPo poll shows that a majority of Americans would refuse to back Palin for President (The Fix, 12/17).

Foreign Policy: Pens National Review column against START Treaty (NRO, 12/17).

Tim Pawlenty

Labor: Claims about public sector workers receives “pants on fire” rating by PolitiFact (PolitiFact, 12/16).

Health Care: Compares health care reform law to “drug dealing” (Minnesota Independent, 12/15).

Religious Right: Signs letter defending SPLC-designated anti-gay hate groups (RWW, 12/15).

Mike Pence

2012: Will decide in January whether to run for President or Governor of Indiana (Politico, 12/20).

Religious Right: Uses unemployment as a reason to cut off funding to Planned Parenthood; signs letter defending SPLC-designated anti-gay hate groups (RWW, 12/20; 12/15).

Mitt Romney

Health Care: Romney “trying to have it both ways” on health insurance mandate (Boston Globe, 12/19).

GOP: Conservatives debate whether Romney has firm ideas or just panders to base (The Atlantic, 12/17).

Rick Santorum

Iowa: Meets with far-right American Principles Project, touts his socially conservative views (Caffeinated Thoughts, 12/18).

Taxes: Opposes tax compromise, says Republicans didn’t “keep their pledge” (CNN, 12/16).

Religious Right: Signs letter defending SPLC-designated anti-gay hate groups (RWW, 12/15).

John Thune

Congress: Accuses Democrats of “flouting” midterm election by passing major bills during lame duck session (AP, 12/20).

New Hampshire: Says he is considering presidential run during interview on NH radio station (WMUR, 12/17).

Taxes: Criticizes Republican opponents of the tax compromise as “politically expedient” (HuffPo, 12/15).

Right Wing Leftovers

2012 Candidates Weekly Update 12/14/10

Mike Huckabee

Religious Right: LGBT activists call on Huckabee to break ties with Lou Engle (Advocate, 12/13).

2012: Believes he is best prepared to “bring in ethnic voters than most Republicans” (National Journal, 12/13).

Obama: Says the President was “amateurish,” less difficult to defeat in 2012 than Republican opponents (National Journal, 12/8).

Sarah Palin

Haiti: Travels to Haiti with Franklin Graham, Greta van Susteren (CBS News, 12/13).

Foreign affairs: Plans trips to Israel and UK, wants to meet Margaret Thatcher (NY Post, 12/9).

Ron Paul

WikiLeaks: Claims that WikiLeaks exposes failure of neoconservative foreign policy (The Nation, 12/13).

Tea Party: Paul’s ideas gain traction as House GOP embraces the Tea Party (NYT, 12/12).

Tim Pawlenty

Religious Right: Talks about faith on Christian Broadcasting Network profile (MN Independent, 12/13).

Labor: Pens WSJ Op-Ed criticizing public employee labor unions as “exploiters” (WSJ, 12/13).

Mike Pence

Obama: Says that the President wants American people to behave “like a dog” and “simply to obey” (US News, 12/13).

South Carolina: Hosts GOP fundraiser in early-primary state with Tea Party favorite and Gov-Elect Nikki Haley (Politico, 12/13).

GOP: George Will looks into Pence’s appeal in the Republican base (WaPo, 12/8).

Mitt Romney

Op-Ed: Slams compromise tax plan in USA Today (USA Today, 12/14).

Independents: Public Policy Poll finds Romney most popular Republican among independent voters (GOP12, 12/13).

Poll: Only GOP contender who leads Obama in Marist poll match up (McClatchy, 12/10).

Rick Santorum

Pennsylvania: Republicans in PA react to Santorum’s potential presidential run (Tribune Review, 12/12).

John Thune

Iowa: Thune’s experience in retail politics in rural, neighboring South Dakota to help bid in Iowa (Politico, 12/12).

Budget: Tells Hannity that unemployment extensions should be paid for but tax cuts shouldn’t (ThinkProgress, 12/9).

Right Wing Leftovers

  • Sad news: Elizabeth Edwards has died.
  • CBN "journalist" David Brody explains that President Obama is "starting to get the message ... [that] America is a center-right nation."
  • Bryan Fischer blasts Orrin Hatch and John Kyl for selling out to President Obama. 
  • John Voight says that Sarah Palin saved Alaska by stepping down as governor. 
  • Chris Christie's bullying act is getting old.
  • Finally, Peter LaBarbera remains very angry at the Southern Poverty Law Center.

Tea Party Nation Backs Hate Party Defender for RNC Chair

I know that Tea Party activists have been working hard to rebut the movement's reputation for racism, so I am sure that this decision will raise a few eyebrows:

One day after former Gov. Sarah Palin of Alaska declined to throw her hat into the ring to become the Tea Party movement’s choice to lead the Republican National Committee, a leading Tea Party group threw its support behind Saul Anuzis of Michigan.

Judson Phillips, the founder of Tea Party Nation, announced in a statement on Tuesday that he was supporting Mr. Anuzis, a former chairman of the Michigan Republican Party. Mr. Phillips said the leadership race was a critical “battle for the heart and soul” of the party.

“Capturing the chairmanship of the R.N.C. is important to the Tea Party movement,” Mr. Phillips wrote in a letter to the members of his group, one of the largest Tea Party organizations in the country. He added: “We need a conservative in as chair of the R.N.C. If not, we will end up with the same class of G.O.P. knuckleheads that blew it so badly in 2006 and 2008.”

And the reason it'll raise eyebrows is because of Anuzis' support of Kyle Bristow:

Saul Anuzis, leader of the Michigan GOP until last year, announced earlier this week that he would be challenging Michael Steele for the chairmanship of the Republican National Committee (RNC). Anuzis had made a failed but significant run against Steele, the party’s first black leader, for the same post in 2009.

Writing about his hopes for the RNC, Anuzis, an avid Twitter user and blogger, especially emphasized his tech-savviness at online social networking as an asset for making electoral gains for the party. What Anuzis didn’t mention was the kind of contacts he cultivated offline in Michigan, in particular his vocal support of the right-wing extremist Kyle Bristow. Bristow led the Michigan State University campus branch of Young Americans For Freedom (MSU-YAF) and was so virulent in his politics that the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) began listing it as a hate group in 2006. Bristow also served as a Republican precinct delegate.

Bristow’s MSU-YAF engaged in extensive racist activities. One of its first stunts was presenting a 13-point agenda that would have established a “Caucasian caucus” at MSU and, in turn, eliminated all student government representation for practically every other non-white, non-heterosexual, non-male or non-Christian student group at the university. Bristow was on record saying, “Homosexuality kills people almost to a degree worse than cigarettes. … these [pro-gay rights] groups are complicit with murder.” MSU-YAF sponsored a “Catch an Illegal Immigrant Day” contest, held a “Koran Desecration” competition, jokingly threatened to distribute smallpox-infested blankets to Native American students, and posted “Gays Spread AIDS” fliers across campus. Bristow’s YAF also brought several extremists to speak at the MSU campus, including Holocaust denier Nick Griffin, leader of the whites-only British National Party.

None of this seemed to bother Anuzis. “This [Bristow] is exactly the type of young kid we want out there,” Anuzis, then already the GOP state chair, said on a radio program in May 2007, the year after MSU-YAF’s more outrageous activities were made public. “I’ve known Kyle for years and I can tell you I have never heard him say a racist or bigoted or sexist thing, ever.” Just this past October, Anuzis’ Michigan GOP issued a press release attacking a Democratic candidate for secretary of state because she once interned at the SPLC, which the release said used “fear and intimidation” in its hate group listings.

Since receiving this outpouring of support from Anuzis, Bristow has graduated to the top ranks of the American radical right. Now a law student at the University of Toledo, Bristow recently self-published a novel, White Apocalypse, whose plot revolves around a series of violent revenge fantasies against Jewish professors, Latino and Native American activists. A major subplot ends in the bloody assassination of a character apparently based on an SPLC staffer. Several notable white supremacists and anti-Semites have endorsed the novel.

Just yesterday Anuzis was asked about his past support for Bristow and he again refused to disavow it.

2012 Candidates Weekly Update 12/07/10

Newt Gingrich

2012: Cillizza profiles Gingrich’s closest aides as he readies possible bid (The Fix, 12/6).

Iowa: Gingrich’s “American Solutions” donated $107,500 to Iowa politicians and state GOP (US News, 12/3).

Immigration: Voices support for immigration reform to conservative Latino convention (Politico, 12/2).

Mike Huckabee

2012: Seriously considers bid as Iowa and South Carolina polls look favorable to candidacy (Politico, 12/6).

Religious Right: Defends FRC from “hate group” label, asks if “60 percent of America is a hate group?” (Walton Sun, 12/5).

Book: New book tour seems like a “dry run for presidency” (Fresno Bee, 12/2).

Sarah Palin

GOP: Declines Tea Party Nation’s draft campaign to have Palin run for RNC Chair (CNN, 12/6).

Reality TV: TV career takes off as the latest episode of “Sarah Palin’s Alaska” features Reality TV star Kate Gosselin (Forbes, 12/6).

Religious Right: Kathleen Kennedy Townsend writes op-ed challenging Palin’s views on church-state separation (WaPo, 12/3).

Tim Pawlenty

Book: AP looks into the ghostwriter of Pawlenty’s book “Courage to Stand” (AP, 12/7).

Experience: Defends record as governor, calling himself a stalwart conservative in a progressive state (Politico, 12/5).

PAC: Pawlenty’s Freedom First PAC spent over $300,000 in last weeks before election (CNN, 12/2).

Mitt Romney

Business: Set to address small business convention in Las Vegas (RCP, 12/6).

Foreign Affairs: Pens op-ed criticizing START Treaty (Boston Globe, 12/3).

FOX: Tells Jay Leno that Fox News job is “not in the cards” (The Cutline, 12/2).

Rick Santorum

PAC: Santorum’s Keystone PAC focused on helping candidates in Iowa and South Carolina (CNN, 12/6).

South Carolina: Speaks to GOP county organizations, including a roast for retiring congressmen (Post & Courier, 12/6).

Religious Right: Plans to make another speech criticizing Kennedy’s views of separation of church and state (The Hill, 12/5).

Right Wing Leftovers

  • Rep. Michele Bachmann says there will be an "insurrection" if House Republican leader don't hold a straight up-or-down vote on repealing health care reform.
  • I guess Dick Cheney won't be traveling to Nigeria any time soon.
  • Grover Norquist and Christopher Barron say Sarah Palin "has earned the right to run [for President] if she chooses." I have no idea what they are talking about.
  • Apparently Matt Barber is an authority on who is and who is not a Catholic, despite the fact that he is not actually a Catholic.
  • I guess this is supposed to be funny.
  • Quote of the day from FRC's latest prayer target asking God to stop the repeal of DADT: "May God's people prevail with Him in prayer to deal with this crisis in National Security and Morality. May God-fearing Senators stand to defeat this evil initiative and protect our troops!"
  • Finally, it looks like Al Mohler's daughter is going to work for Sen. Mitch McConnell:

DADT: Religious Right Wants Investigation Into Climate of Intimidation at Pentagon

Dozens of Religious Right leaders have come together to sign on to a letter [PDF] released under the Freedom Federation banner calling on the Senate to put off any vote on repealing Don't Ask, Don't Tell until the next session of Congress so that there can be investigations into whether the findings of the recent report showing DADT could be repealed with little to no risk was, in fact, the result of a "climate of not-so-subtle intimidation in the Pentagon" that lead to the

It is a serious risk to national security to repeal DADT without first investigating thoroughly – in public hearings – the effect of the proposed repeal. We are engaged in a war on many fronts. Our troops are in harm’s way in Afghanistan, Iraq and elsewhere. This is no time to experiment with social engineering of the military.

We are also gravely concerned about the effect that repealing DADT will have on religious freedom. One senior army general, Lt. Gen. Thomas Bostick, said that those who oppose repeal are guilty of unacceptable attitudes that he reportedly described as “bigotry.” Additionally, expert analysts have warned that a “non-discrimination” policy for sexual minorities will have broad-reaching effects on religious freedom. It is conceivable that chaplains will be forbidden to preach or speak about their denomination’s position on homosexuality.

The Defense Department report on the likely effects of repealing DADT was not released until November 30, 2010. There is simply not enough time between then and adjournment to investigate and deliberate about this very important issue. For that reason, any consideration of repeal should be put off until next year.

Moreover, we are deeply concerned about the methodology of the DOD report and survey. In view of General Bostick’s disturbing comments and Admiral Mullen’s and Secretary of Defense Gates’ unseemly cheerleading on this issue, we believe it behooves the next Congress to investigate whether proponents of repeal tried to create a climate of not-so-subtle intimidation in the Pentagon.

The rush to repeal DADT by January of 2011 is a slap in the face of the American people who are tired of bully politics. Moreover, the consequences of repealing DADT will no doubt result in service members leaving the military or refusing to join. We cannot afford attrition or demoralization of our military in light of the wars we are facing in the Middle East, not to mention the looming threat of North Korea.

Among the names listed on this are:

Sarah Palin
Mat and Anita Staver
Ken Blackwell
Tony Perkins
Penny Nance
Lou Sheldon
Elaine Donnelly
Andrea Lafferty
Samuel Rodriguez
Robert Knight
Harry Jackson
Janet Porter
Cindy Jacobs
Tim Wildmon
Cliff Kincaid
Jim Garlow
Tom Minnery
Gary Bauer
Richard Viguerie
Gary Kreep
Linda Harvey
Joseph Farah
Gary Cass
Rick Joyner
Paul Blair
Don Feder
Kelly Shackelford
James Klingenschmitt
E.W. Jackson
Star Parker
Matt Barber
Dave Welch

UPDATE: Apparently the Sarah Palin signature on this letter was a mistake, as that signature now reads:

Rita Grace
Organizer
Constitutional TEA Party
President
Sarah Palin Republican Women

Right Wing Leftovers

  • Randall Terry and Alan Keyes are giving Republican in Congress 100 days to defund Planned Parenthood.
  • Joe Scarborough wants to know when someone in the GOP will "man up" and put an end to the charade the Sarah Palin is a legitimate presidential candidate. I'm guessing the answer will be "never."
  • Just a reminder: Harry Potter is very dangerous.
  • Dennis Prager boldly takes on the pressing issue of children having too much self-esteem.
  • The forces behind the Manhattan Declaration want Apple to reinstitute their iPhone app.
  • FRC is not buying the results of the DADT report.
  • Finally, the quote of the day from Gary Bauer: "Nothing has changed at FRC since Tony Perkins took over. It was not a 'hate group' when I ran it and it is not a 'hate group' today. What has changed in recent years is the aggressiveness of the 'tyrants of tolerance.'”

2012 Candidates Weekly Update 11/30/10

John Bolton

2012: Bush’s UN Ambassador considers presidential bid to bring emphasis to “foreign and national security issues” (Politico, 11/28).

Foreign Affairs: Writes Op-Ed against reviving six-party talks with North Korea (LA Times, 11/23).

Newt Gingrich

South Carolina: Set to address key Republican event in South Carolina (The Spartanburg Herald Journal, 11/28).

GOP: Scheduled to speak at conservative Latino forum on December 2nd (The Americano).

Mike Huckabee

Health Care: Says that the country doesn’t “have a health care crisis. We have a health crisis” (The Bakersfield Californian, 11/26).

Religious Right: May split Evangelical, women’s vote with Sarah Palin (The Fix, 11/23).

2012: Claims to be undecided about run in interview during his children’s book tour (Arizona Republic, 11/23).

Sarah Palin

Government: Blasts Obama over leaks, dubs WikiLeaks head a terrorist (Daily Mail, 11/30).

GOP: Joe Scarborough knocks Palin for mocking Ronald Reagan and George HW Bush, says she “embarrasses herself” (Politico, 11/30).

Women: Jamie Stiehm takes aim at Palin’s “faux-feminism” and claims Palin is a detriment to women in politics (US News & World Report, 11/30).

Health: Criticizes Michelle Obama’s “anti-obesity thing” (Essence, 11/27).

Mitt Romney

GOP: Wins support from George HW and Barbara Bush (LA Times, 11/24).

Poll: Leads other prospective presidential candidates with 20% support (Maris, 11/23).

Rick Santorum

New Hampshire: Tells NH audience he wants earmarks banned, even though he was an earmarker (Morning Call, 11/29).

Foreign Affairs: Blasts Obama over handling of Iran and WikiLeaks (AP, 11/30).

John Thune

2012: Thune’s chances of winning nomination strong according to political markets (Politico, 11/30).

Right Wing Leftovers

Right Wing Leftovers

  • I am shocked to learn that "there’s a strong overlap between those who think [President Obama] holds different religious views and those who disapprove of him."
  • Consider me unimpressed by the lack of notable names Richard Viguerie managed to round-up for his "don't mess with Jim DeMint" letter.
  • Delete your Facebook account or leave his church.
  • Quote of the Day from GOProud's Jimmy LaSilvia: "I believe the LGBT community should support the pro-life community. Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness applies to gay people and the unborn."
  • Finally, Sarah Palin is "disgusted" by the way Levi Johnson has tried to exploit his fame ... says the woman with her own reality TV show and a daughter appearing on "Dancing With the Stars."
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Sarah Palin Posts Archive

Kyle Mantyla, Monday 04/01/2013, 4:35pm
John Avlon @ The Daily Beast: Palin’s SarahPAC Embarrassment: Consultants Are Cashing In. Jeremy Hooper: Head of org that's vowed to 'drive a wedge between gays and blacks' says it's a 'slur' to compare gay, black fights. Joe.My.God: NOM's Message To Google. Tom Kludt @ TPM: Georgia GOP Chair Warns That Straight People Will Enter Sham Gay Marriages For Benefits. Remington Shepard: Obama Doesn't Have A "Pastor Problem." Joshua Pugh @ Progress Michigan: Dave Agema, Unscripted. Zack Ford @ Think Progress: Arizona... MORE >
Kyle Mantyla, Thursday 03/28/2013, 4:30pm
Oh look, Sarah Palin's PAC is gearing up for 2014, presumably so it can raise money so she can fly around the country and stay in hotels. Glenn Beck's The Blaze announces that the network has been picked up by "the 21st-largest cable operator in the nation." Quite a coup! Faith and Action's Rob Scheck says "DOMA is doomed." Apparently America has not learned from what happened to Sodom and Gomorrah and so "we are going to learn the hard way that God means exactly what he has spoken." Finally, Mat Staver rips Charles... MORE >
Kyle Mantyla, Saturday 03/16/2013, 11:41am
The highlight of the final day of CPAC was none other than former half-term governor Sarah Palin who classed up the joint as only she can, making a joke about how for Christmas, her husband Todd got a gun but "I got the rack" before taking several drinks out of a Big Gulp to wild applause: Behold the modern conservative movement. MORE >
Brian Tashman, Wednesday 02/27/2013, 5:45pm
More Religious Right groups have signed up [PDF] for NOM’s “Marriage March.” It appears that Steve King is getting closer to locking up the GOP nomination for Iowa’s open U.S. Senate seat. Rick Perry will attend Concerned Women for America’s “Texas Faith and Family Rally.” Sarah Palin writes that “the feds are stockpiling bullets in case of civil unrest” after we go into default…and then calls on politicians to “stop the hysterics.” The right-wing news outlet Human Events is ending its print... MORE >
Brian Tashman, Friday 01/25/2013, 5:50pm
We are heartbroken over the news that Sarah Palin is not renewing her contract with Fox News.  But Palin acolyte and failed 2010 Senate candidate Joe Miller may return to politics.  The American Decency Association claims that criticism of “ex-terrorist” hoaxer Kamal Saleem is proof that he is telling the truth!  Kenneth Miller has been jailed due to his refusal to testify before a grand jury about his role in the Lisa Miller (no relation) kidnapping case.  Both David Barton and Liberty Counsel are comparing President Obama to Adolf... MORE >
Josh Glasstetter, Monday 12/17/2012, 12:01pm
South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley will announce shortly that she has picked Rep. Tim Scott to replace Senator Jim DeMint, who is leaving to head up the right-wing Heritage Foundation. DeMint’s imminent retirement is seen by many as a setback for the Tea Party, which had a genuine champion in DeMint, and a sign that the movement’s best days are behind it. But the Tea Party is still raging in South Carolina, and Scott is poised to become its new Senate standard-bearer. Tim Scott was elected to Congress in 2010, becoming the first African-American Republican to represent South... MORE >
Kyle Mantyla, Tuesday 11/06/2012, 5:41pm
Michael B. Keegan: Why We Fight. Ruby Cramer @ BuzzFeed: Cops Dismiss Election Night “Riot” Claims. Meenal Vamburkar @ Mediaite: Sarah Palin To Greta: Evangelicals Riled Up By Obama Trying To ‘Violate The Religious Conscience.’ Towleroad: Ohio GOP Senate Candidate Josh Mandel's Family Takes Out Newspaper Ad Denouncing His Anti-Gay Positions. Sasha Belenky @ The Huffington Post: Chris Christie Slams 'Know-Nothing, Disgruntled' Mitt Romney Staffers. Bradlee Dean Info: Judge Zeldon: Bradlee Dean Totally Has to Cough Up $24,625.23. MORE >
Brian Tashman, Thursday 04/05/2012, 1:45pm
Today in her syndicated column today, conservative writer Debra Saunders compares “Hunger Games” heroine Katniss Everdeen to Sarah Palin, saying that just like the maverick-y former Republican vice presidential candidate, Everdeen is “fearless” and “does not submit to authority”: Panem throws in extra incentives -- special homes for the victor, and the winner's district receives extra rations for a year. The games work, President Coriolanus Snow observes, because the contestants impart "hope." In contrast, New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd... MORE >